Cyclic variations of glucose-induced electrical activity in pancreatic B cells

Pflugers Arch. 1982 Jun;393(4):322-7. doi: 10.1007/BF00581418.


Microelectrodes were used to record the effects of glucose on the membrane potential of single mouse B cells. In most cells, the slow waves of depolarization and the intervals of repolarization produced by a constant concentration of glucose displayed a great regularity. However, cyclic variations in the duration of these slow waves and/or intervals were observed in a certain number of B cells. These oscillations were more clearly visible and more frequent (47%) in the presence of 15 mM glucose, than in the presence of 10 mM glucose (19%). They sometimes disappeared with time, but sometimes persisted for over 90 min and were not affected by atropine, propanolol and phentolamine. Their mean period was 203 s at 10 mM glucose and 235 s at 15 mM glucose. The membrane potential and the degree of electrical activity were not different in B cells exhibiting these cyclic variations or not. These oscillations in the duration of slow waves and intervals induced by glucose could be due to fluctuations in metabolic events and in cytoplasmic K+ activity in B cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Electrophysiology
  • Female
  • Glucose / pharmacology*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Islets of Langerhans / physiology*
  • Membrane Potentials / drug effects*
  • Mice
  • Microelectrodes
  • Periodicity


  • Glucose