Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America vol:85 issue:11 pages:3865-9
Glucose is a well-known stimulus of proinsulin biosynthesis. In purified beta cells, the sugar induces a 25-fold increase in the synthesis of insulin immunoreactive material over 60-min incubation. Autoradiographic analysis of the individual cells shows that this effect is achieved via dose-dependent recruitment of pancreatic beta cells to biosynthetic activity. Recruitment of beta cells is also seen in isolated islets exposed to glucose. The sigmoidal dose-response curve for glucose-induced proinsulin biosynthesis thus reflects a heterogeneous responsiveness of pancreatic beta cells rather than a progressively increasing activity of functionally homogeneous cells. Dose-dependent recruitment of functionally diverse cells may be a ubiquitous mechanism in tissue function.