To determine whether glipizide, a sulfonylurea, can prevent diabetes in the diabetic-prone BB rat model, rats were studied from 35 to 240 days of age. Treated animals received oral glipizide (10 or 100 mg/kg/day) from 35 to 200 days of age, and control rats received oral placebo. From 80 to 135 days of age at both drug doses, glipizide decreased the incidence of diabetes, thus delaying disease onset (P<0.02). At the higher dose of glipizide, a diabetes preventive effect was observed (P<0.025). There were no significant differences in body weights between the treated and control groups. At 240 days, i.e. 40 days after stopping glipizide and placebo treatments, diabetes incidence remained stable in the two groups; thus the effect of glipizide persisted after discontinuation of the drug. Serum glucose and insulin levels measured at 90 and 200 days did not reveal differences between the glipizide treated and control groups. To determine whether the sulfonylurea affected autoimmune events, the prevalence and severity of islet inflammation were examined. In glipizide-treated BB rats at 240 days, only 44% of rats had islet inflammation compared to 86% in the control group (P<0.01). At both 90 and 240 days the severity of islet inflammation was decreased in the glipizide treatment groups compared with the control groups (P<0.01). These data indicate that glipizide (a) prevents diabetes in the diabetic-prone BB rat strain, (b) decreases the prevalence and severity of islet inflammation even after drug withdrawal and (c) may dampen autoimmune events leading to diabetes onset.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy