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Pancreatic beta-cell metabolism

The pancreatic beta-cell is unique because its major agonist, glucose, undergoes metabolism rather than interacting with a receptor. Glucose is metabolized through the cytosolic reactions of glycolysis and then enters mitochodrial metabolism as pyruvate. These reactions in turn generate signals which trigger the secretory machinery of the beta-cell to stimulate the release of insulin. To better understand these events, we have created a detailed computer simulation of the beta-cell to test current metabolism-secretion hypotheses and to develop new strategies for elucidation of beta-cell signaling. This simulator was presented at the 2001 EASD in Glasgow, UK Diabetologia 44 S1:A123.

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