Pancreatic Macrophages and their Diabetogenic Effects: Highlight on Several Metabolic Scenarios and Dietary Approach

Endocr Metab Immune Disord Drug Targets. 2023;23(3):304-315. doi: 10.2174/1871530322666220510123913.


Background: Evidence shows that a low-grade inflammation sustains type 2 diabetes (T2D). Pancreatic macrophages release cytokines and chemokines that play a fundamental role in the pathophysiology of islet damage and destruction of beta-cells.

Methods: The authors discuss the main mechanism by which resident (pancreatic) and circulating macrophages regulate beta-cell development and survival in several scenarios, including T2D, type 1 diabetes mellitus, obesity, and insulin resistance. Data are mostly related to in vitro and animal studies.

Results: Lastly, an overview of the role of the Mediterranean diet components (i.e., polyphenols, polyunsaturated fatty acids, prebiotics, probiotics, and vitamins) will be illustrated as potential agents for reducing inflammation and oxidative stress in patients with T2D when used along with antihyperglycemic treatments.

Keywords: Diabetes mellitus; islets; macrophages; nutrition; obesity; pancreatic macrophages.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2* / metabolism
  • Inflammation / metabolism
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells* / metabolism
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Pancreas / metabolism