Betacellulin (BTC) has been shown to have a role in the differentiation and proliferation of beta-cells both in vitro and in vivo. We administered a human betacellulin (hBTC) adenovirus vector to male ICR mice via retrograde pancreatic duct injection. As a control, we administered a beta-galactosidase adenovirus vector. In the mice, hBTC protein was mainly overexpressed by pancreatic duct cells. On immunohistochemical analysis, we observed features of beta-cell neogenesis as newly formed insulin-positive cells in the duct cell lining or islet-like cell clusters (ICCs) closely associated with the ducts. The BrdU labeling index of beta-cells was also increased by the betacellulin vector compared with that of control mice. These results indicate that hBTC gene transduction into adult pancreatic duct cells promoted beta-cell differentiation (mainly from duct cells) and proliferation of pre-existing beta-cells, resulting in an increase of the beta-cell mass that improved glucose tolerance in diabetic mice.