Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Pancreatic beta-cells secrete insulin in response to elevated blood glucose via Ca(2+)-dependent fusion of secretory granules with the plasma membrane (regulated exocytosis). While exocytosis has been extensively investigated in rodent beta-cells, studies on human beta-cells are scarce. We have characterized the exocytotic properties of human beta-cells by insulin release measurements, carbon fiber amperometry, and capacitance measurements using the patch-clamp technique. Voltage-clamp depolarizations evoked capacitance increases in single beta-cells in a time- and voltage-dependent manner. The capacitance responses as well as insulin release from intact islets were strongly amplified by elevation of intracellular cAMP levels. Exocytosis was more dependent on Ca(2+) influx through P/Q-type than L-type Ca(2+) channels, reflecting the relative contribution of these channels to the total Ca(2+) current. Exocytosis (as monitored by capacitance or amperometric measurements) decreased during repetitive stimulation as a result of inactivation of Ca(2+) channels as well as depletion of a readily releasable pool of granules. These results reveal both similarities and differences between human and rodent beta-cells.

Original publication




Journal article


Ann N Y Acad Sci

Publication Date





187 - 193


Calcium Channels, Cells, Cultured, Cyclic AMP, Electrophysiology, Exocytosis, Humans, Insulin, Insulin-Secreting Cells, Patch-Clamp Techniques