Existing protocols for screening for such factors are expensive, labor-intensive and require specialized equipment. Rockann Mosser, Ph.D., and Maureen Gannon, Ph.D., have improved existing assays to develop a small-scale screening method for beta cell proliferative factors. Their approach, reported in the December issue of BioTechniques, uses intact mouse pancreatic islets for an initial screening of potential compounds. Then the investigators dissociate and analyze the same islets to confirm beta cell proliferation.
The method uses common reagents and equipment, simplifying the search for beta cell proliferative factors. Because intact islets also contain pancreatic alpha, delta, epsilon and PP cells, the techniques could be used to search for factors that stimulate proliferation of these cell types as well.
Send suggestions for articles to highlight in Aliquots and any other feedback about the column to firstname.lastname@example.org
Leigh MacMillan, (615) 322-4747