Cortisone fails to affect levels of islet cell surface antibodies and incidence of diabetes in the BB rat
Summary, in English
Cortisone acetate (250 µg/kg·day) was given by im injections to 40 21-day-old diabetes-prone BB rats. The animals were followed longitudinally to determine islet cell surface antibodies (ICSA), as an expression of an abnormal immune reaction against the pancreatic islet cells and plasma glucose to estimate the degree of metabolic control. ICSA were detected 10-150 days before the diagnosis of diabetes. In the cortisone-treated group the diabetic rats showed significantly higher ICSA values compared to the nondiabetic ones, both in frequency of positive tests (P < 0.05) and in mean binding values (P < 0.02). In the control group, no difference in ICSA levels were seen between diabetic and nondiabetic rats. The cortisone regimen also failed to influence the degree of insulitis, commonly associated with diabetes in these rats. These experiments in well defined animals which spontaneously develop diabetes do not support the use of low dose cortisone treatment in attempts to improve or prevent insulin-dependent diabetes in human subjects.