Pancreatic islet transplantation may be the most ideal treatment for patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. However, immunosuppressive agents such as cyclosporine A(CsA) and FK506, used for these transplanted patients have been reported to cause glucose intolerance. In the present study, we have compared the effects of CsA and FK506 on glucose-stimulated insulin release from the isolated dog pancreatic islets, which have been maintained in culture for 3 days after isolation. The isolated dog pancreatic islets, pretreated for 24 hr with either CsA or FK506 (1, 10, and 100 nM), were perifused with 16.7 mM glucose. Pretreatment with both drugs suppressed glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in a dose-dependent fashion. CsA (100 nM), which is a therapeutically relevant concentration, significantly suppressed both the first and second phases of glucose-stimulated insulin release compared with 100 nM FK506. These findings suggest that, with a therapeutically relevant concentration, FK506 may be less toxic than CsA against pancreatic islets in patients with organ or cell transplantation.
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