SECRETORY CAPACITY AND ULTRASTRUCTURE OF RAT PANCREATIC ISLETS AFTER PRESERVATION OF PANCREAS IN DIFFERENT CONDITIONS

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Abstract

SUMMARY

Experiments were performed with rat pancreas to investigate optimum conditions for obtaining and preserving the pancreas for subsequent isolation of islets that were viable by both functional and morphological criteria.

After only 30 min of warm ischaemia, the yield and viability of islets that could be isolated were poor. However, if the pancreas was removed and placed immediately in a cold bicarbonate-buffered medium, which was supplemented with HEPES to maintain the pH and Trasylol to inhibit proteolytic activity, then viable islets could be isolated consistently after over 8 hr of storage.

These results demonstrate that even short periods of warm ischaemia will render the pancreas unsuitable for islet isolation. Once the pancreas is placed in a suitable cold medium, however, considerable delay may be permissible without adversely affecting the viability of the islets which can be obtained. The same conditions might prove to be applicable when human pancreas is obtained for the purpose of transplantation into diabetic subjects.

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