Researchers in Italy and the United States collaborated to determine whether the peptide hormone glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) could improve function and inhibit programmed cell death or suicide.
Human islets were cultured for five days either with or without GLP-1. They were studied for viability, the absence or presence of cell suicide and glucose-dependent insulin production.
Results showed better-preserved three-dimensional islet morphology in the GLP-1 group than the controls. Reduction of suicide cells was particularly evident at day three.
Researchers concluded that GLP-1 preserves morphology, improves functions and inhibits cell suicide.
-Endocrinology, December 2003