Pancreatic Beta Cells

Diabetics, and many non-diabetics, are aware of the fact that the pancreas is responsible for producing the body's insulin supply. What they are probably not aware of is exactly how that process works.

The beta cells located within the pancreas are the ones that are responsible for making insulin. Inside the pancreas are areas which are known as islets of Langerhands. The majority of the cells located in these islets are beta cells.

Since beta cells are why insulin is efficiently produced, it stands to reason that when these cells start to die out or become damaged, this offers an opening for type 1 diabetes to originate. Type 1 is also known as insulin-dependent diabetes.

Although beta cells are damaged due to certain autoimmune processes, scientists are not exactly sure why this occurs. They do know that once the destruction begins, it represents an almost complete wiping out of the hormone.

Part of the plasma membrane of the beta cell is made up of canals. These canals are able to detect glucose levels within the blood. When beta cells detect an increase in glucose within the body, it responds in like fashion by releasing insulin.

Since the pancreas cannot be coaxed into producing more insulin, the only alternative is to introduce insulin into the body from a outside source. The common way of accomplishing this is through daily insulin injections.

Another treatment option still under research involves islet transplants. But there are several problems with this technology. One is that the transplantation only buys the patient from 1 to 5 years, at the most. Second, is the limited availability of human islet cells for transplantation.

Get a Free Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to BattleDiabetes.com who, in addition to 3rd party partners, may contact you with updates, products and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy and terms and conditions.

More Articles

More Articles

Scientists have discovered that a single gene forms a common link between type 2 diabetes and...

Natural supplements like cinnamon extract and apple cider vinegar could hold the key to lowering blood sugar levels, according to a recent...

Natural supplements like cinnamon extract and apple cider vinegar could hold the key to lowering blood sugar levels, according to a recent...

Could a person's risk for type 2 diabetes be written in their genes?

According to a study recently published in ...

Women who frequently shift around their sleeping hours could have worse metabolic health outcomes than their peers who stick with a...

The presence of the hormone leptin may hinder prenatal development, which could explain the origin of type 2 diabetes, according to...

An analysis of fossilized Native American feces shows that our ancestors ate up to sixteen times the fiber that we do today, but our...

Managing diabetes is hugely challenging for people of any age, but a new study suggests that young people may suffer all the more....

Disruptions to the gut’s ecosystem could be a future symptom facing young children who take antibiotics, which makes them more susceptible...

Breastfeeding a newborn holds many benefits for mommy and baby; it reduces the baby's risk for colds and viruses, it helps his bones (and yours)...

Fans of the Dexcom G5 Mobile have something to smile about.

At yesterday's hearing with the U.S. Food and Drug...

If you start your day with a cup of tea and end it with a glass of red wine, your blood sugar may thank you.

At least that...

As medical experts continue to debate whether or not "healthy obesity" can even exist, one new study suggests that risk for heart disease...

For years, type 1 diabetics have been anxiously waiting for that medical marvel that can stop the constant injections: the artificial...

“Low-fat” has been the battle cry of the health-conscious for over ‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌‌...