Open Access Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Exenatide in Human Pancreatic Islets

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Abstract:

Exenatide is an analog of the incretin hormone glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1) that is used for the treatment of T2D for their metabolic effects. In addition to its insulinotropic effects, exenatide increases functional islet mass and improves their survival. Improved outcomes have been reported in recent clinical islet transplantation trials for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether exenatide has anti-inflammatory properties in human islets. Exenatide treatment improved islet function, significantly reduced content of inflammation-related molecules (tissue factor, IFN-γ, IL-17, IL-1β, and IL-2) and caspase 3 activation, whereas increased phosphorylation of ERK1/2, STAT3, and Akt in vitro. Immunostaining showed expression of GLP-1R in β-cells but not in α-cells. IL-1β colocalized with GLP-1R in β-cells. Induction of serine proteinase inhibitor 9 (PI-9) was detected after exposure of human islets to exenatide in vitro and after transplantation into immunodeficient mice. GLP-1 induced PI-9 expression in vitro but to a lower extent than exenatide. This effect was partially blocked by the antagonist exendin-9 in vitro. As assessed by immunostaining PI-9 is mostly expressed in β-cells but not in α-cells. In conclusion, we describe anti-inflammatory and cytoprotective properties of exenatide in human islets. Exenatide-mediated PI-9 expression, the only known granzyme B inhibitor, unveils potential immunoregulatory properties.

Keywords: Cytokines; Exenatide; Glucagon-like peptide-1; Human pancreatic islets; Inflammation; Islet transplantation; Nude mice; Proteinase inhibitor 9 (PI-9)

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3727/096368911X576027

Affiliations: Diabetes Research Institute, University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA

Publication date: April 1, 2012

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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