A Protocol to Enhance INS1E and MIN6 Functionality—The Use of Theophylline

Milou Groot Nibbelink, Giulia Marchioli, Lorenzo Moroni, Marcel Karperien, Aart van Apeldoorn

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In vitro research in the field of type I diabetes is frequently limited by the availability of a functional model for islets of Langerhans. This method shows that by the addition of theophylline to the glucose buffers, mouse insulinoma MIN6 and rat insulinoma INS1E pseudo-islets can serve as a model for islets of Langerhans for in vitro research. The effect of theophylline is dose- and cell line-dependent, resulting in a minimal stimulation index of five followed by a rapid return to baseline insulin secretion by reducing glucose concentrations after a first high glucose stimulation. This protocol solves issues concerning in vitro research for type I diabetes as donors and the availability of primary islets of Langerhans are limited. To avoid the limitations of using human donor material, cell lines represent a valid alternative. Many different cell lines have been reported, but the lack of reproducible responsiveness to glucose stimulation remains a challenge.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1532
Number of pages9
JournalInternational journal of molecular sciences
Issue number1532
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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