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Short-term CFTR inhibition reduces islet area in C57BL/6 mice

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rashmi Maheshwari, Professor James Shaw, Dr Michael White



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© 2019, The Author(s).Cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD) worsens CF lung disease leading to early mortality. Loss of beta cell area, even without overt diabetes or pancreatitis is consistently observed. We investigated whether short-term CFTR inhibition was sufficient to impact islet morphology and function in otherwise healthy mice. CFTR was inhibited in C57BL/6 mice via 8-day intraperitoneal injection of CFTRinh172. Animals had a 7-day washout period before measures of hormone concentration or islet function were performed. Short-term CFTR inhibition increased blood glucose concentrations over the course of the study. However, glucose tolerance remained normal without insulin resistance. CFTR inhibition caused marked reductions in islet size and in beta cell and non-beta cell area within the islet, which resulted from loss of islet cell size rather than islet cell number. Significant reductions in plasma insulin concentrations and pancreatic insulin content were also observed in CFTR-inhibited animals. Temporary CFTR inhibition had little long-term impact on glucose-stimulated, or GLP-1 potentiated insulin secretion. CFTR inhibition has a rapid impact on islet area and insulin concentrations. However, islet cell number is maintained and insulin secretion is unaffected suggesting that early administration of therapies aimed at sustaining beta cell mass may be useful in slowing the onset of CFRD.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Khan D, Kelsey R, Maheshwari RR, Stone VM, Hasib A, Manderson Koivula FN, Watson A, Harkin S, Irwin N, Shaw JA, McClenaghan NH, Venglovecz V, Ebert A, Flodstrom-Tullberg M, White MG, Kelly C

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Scientific Reports

Year: 2019

Volume: 9

Issue: 1

Online publication date: 02/08/2019

Acceptance date: 16/07/2019

Date deposited: 12/08/2019

ISSN (electronic): 2045-2322

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group


DOI: 10.1038/s41598-019-47745-w


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