Genes induced by growth arrest in a pancreatic β cell line: Identification by analysis of cDNA arrays

Yitzhak Zimmer, Dalit Milo-Landesman, Anton Svetlanov, Shimon Efrat*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Pancreatic β cell lines are a potentially attractive source of material for cell therapy of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. However, induction of proliferation in post-mitotic, differentiated β cells is likely to affect the expression of multiple genes associated with cell function, resulting in dedifferentiation. We have developed a murine β cell line by conditional transformation with the SV40 T antigen oncoprotein. These cells can undergo reversible induction of proliferation and growth arrest. Here we utilized this model to identify differences in gene expression between proliferating and quiescent β cells, by analyzing known β cell genes and differentially secreted proteins, as well as by a systematic survey of a mouse cDNA array. Our findings demonstrate that growth arrest stimulates expression of the insulin gene and genes encoding components of the insulin secretory vesicles. Screening of the cDNA array revealed the activation of multiple genes following growth arrest, many of them novel genes which may be related to β cell function. Characterization of these genes is likely to contribute to our understanding of β cell function and the ability to employ β cell lines in cell therapy of diabetes. Copyright (C) 1999 Federation of European Biochemical Societies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-70
Number of pages6
JournalFEBS Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - 20 Aug 1999


  • Beta cell gene expression
  • Beta cell line
  • Conditional transformation
  • Insulin biosynthesis
  • cDNA array


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