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Failure of successful intrasplenic transplantation of islets from lean mice to cure obese-hyperglycaemic mice, despite islet growth


Implantation of allogeneic pancreatic islets encapsulated in Millipore diffusion chambers has been reported to normalize the obese-hyperglycaemic syndrome in mice. In the present study, both young and adult ob/ob mice remained hyperglycaemic and gained weight after intrasplenic implantation of 500 isogeneic islets isolated from lean mice. Such islets normalized the elevated blood-glucose of alloxan-diabetic lean mice. Morphometric analysis of the intrasplenically implanted islets showed that the mean islet volume in the ob/ob mice was five times larger than that of the lean, non-diabetic mice. Immunocytochemical staining of the spleens showed an increased proportion of B-cells in the enlarged, intrasplenic islets in the ob/ob mice. Moreover, autoradiographical examination of these islets demonstrated the presence of several labelled cells. These results suggest that the growth of the implanted “lean” islets is due to extrapancreatic factors which stimulate islet cell replication in the obese-hyperglycaemic mouse.


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Andersson, A., Eriksson, U., Petersson, B. et al. Failure of successful intrasplenic transplantation of islets from lean mice to cure obese-hyperglycaemic mice, despite islet growth. Diabetologia 20, 237–241 (1981).

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Key words

  • Obese-hyperglycaemic mice
  • isolated pancreatic islets
  • islet transplantation
  • serum glucose
  • islet volume
  • autoradiography
  • islet cell replication
  • immunocytochemistry