Ultrastructural study of pancreatic B cell regeneration in newborn rats after destruction by streptozotocin

Virchows Arch B Cell Pathol Incl Mol Pathol. 1982;39(2):173-85. doi: 10.1007/BF02892846.


An ultrastructural study of endocrine cells was performed in the pancreas of rats treated with a single dose of streptozotocin on the day of birth. Most of the B cells present at birth were destroyed by streptozotocin but some survived and could again synthesize insulin after eliminating their altered fragments in phago-lysosome structures. New B cells were produced primarily by the formation of new islets from the small pancreatic ducts. A study of mitosis in colchicine treated animals showed that most B cells present on day 4 were formed by mitosis of undifferentiated cells. No significant division of preexisting differentiated B cells could be shown in streptozotocin treated rats. B cell regeneration in this newborn rat model is thus explained primarily by budding of new islets from the ducts.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Islets of Langerhans / ultrastructure*
  • Mitosis
  • Pancreatic Ducts / pathology
  • Rats
  • Regeneration
  • Streptozocin / pharmacology*
  • Time Factors


  • Streptozocin