Chronic cadmium treatment induces islet B cell injury in ovariectomized cynomolgus monkeys

Yoshimasa Kurata, Osamu Katsuta, Takuya Doi, Takeshi Kawasuso, Hideaki Hiratsuka, Minoru Tsuchitani, Takashi Umemura

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26 Citations (Scopus)


In an attempt to establish a primate model of chronic cadmium (Cd) toxicosis, we ovariectomized cynomolgus monkeys and treated with CdCl2 by repeated intravenous injections for 13 to 15 months. The animals showed an increase in blood glucose from Month 10 and a decrease in blood insulin at Month 11 of the Cd-treatment. Histopathological examination of the Cd-treated animals revealed islet atrophy with reduction in islet number and vacuolation of the islet cells, whereas there was no remarkable change in the acinar cells of the exocrine pancreas. In histomorphometrical examination, insulin-positive areas in the islets were significantly decreased, accompanying a relative increase of glucagon-positive areas. Large amounts of Cd accumulated in the pancreas, and metallothionein (MT), a Cd binding protein, was localized in the islets of Cd-treated animals. The present study demonstrated that the chronic intravenous injection of Cd to cynomolgus monkeys induced the accumulation of the metal in the pancreas, degeneration of islet B cells and the diabetic clinical signs. Therefore the islet B cell is one of the major targets of the chronic Cd poisoning in monkeys.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-188
Number of pages14
JournalJapanese Journal of Veterinary Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2003 Feb
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic cadmium toxicosis
  • Cynomolgus monkey
  • Diabetes
  • Islet B cell
  • Pancreas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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