Rapamycin Increases Mortality in db/db Mice, a Mouse Model of Type 2 Diabetes

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We examined the effect of rapamycin on the life span of a mouse model of type 2 diabetes, db/db mice. At 4 months of age, male and female C57BLKSJ- leprdb/db mice ( db/db ) were placed on either a control diet, lacking rapamycin or a diet containing rapamycin and maintained on these diets over their life span. Rapamycin was found to reduce the life span of the db/db mice. The median survival of male db/db mice fed the control and rapamycin diets was 349 and 302 days, respectively, and the median survival of female db/db mice fed the control and rapamycin diets was 487 and 411 days, respectively. Adjusting for gender differences, rapamycin increased the mortality risk 1.7-fold in both male and female db/db mice. End-of-life pathological data showed that suppurative inflammation was the main cause of death in the db/db mice, which is enhanced slightly by rapamycin treatment.

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