Phenotypic characterization of polygenic type 2 diabetes in TALLYHO/JngJ mice.

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Blood-Glucose, Blotting-Western, Body-Weight, Breeding, Cholesterol, Deoxyglucose, Diabetes-Mellitus-Type-2, Female, Glucose-Tolerance-Test, Glucose-Transporter-Type-4, Insulin, Male, Mice-Inbred-Strains, Muscle-Skeletal, Pancreas, Phenotype, Time-Factors

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J Endocrinol 2006 Nov;191(2):437-46.


The TALLYHO/JngJ (TH) strain is a newly established, polygenic mouse model for type 2 diabetes (T2D) and obesity, and we have previously reported some key physiological features of this model after the overt onset of diabetes. In the present work, we conducted a comprehensive phenotypic characterization of TH in order to completely characterize this new and relevant model for human T2D and obesity. We monitored the development of obesity and diabetes starting at 4 weeks of age by measuring body weight, glucose tolerance, and plasma levels of insulin, glucose, and triglyceride. Additionally, histological alterations in the pancreas and glucose uptake and glucose transporter 4 (GLUT4) content in soleus muscle were also examined. Compared with age- and sex-matched C57BL/6J (B6) mice, both male and female TH mice were significantly heavier, hyperleptinemic, and hyperinsulinemic at 4 weeks of age, without glucose intolerance or hyperglycemia. TH mice maintained higher body weights throughout the study period of 16 weeks. The hyperinsulinemia in TH mice worsened with age, but to a lesser degree in females than in males. Both the male and the female TH mice had enlarged pancreatic islets. Male TH mice showed impaired glucose tolerance at 8 weeks that became more prominent at 16 weeks. Plasma glucose levels continuously increased with age in male TH mice resulting in frank diabetes, while female TH mice remained normoglycemic throughout the study. Impaired glucose tolerance and hyperglycemia in male TH mice were accompanied by impaired 2-deoxyglucose uptake in the soleus muscle at basal and insulin-stimulated states, but without any reduction in GLUT4 content. Interestingly, male TH mice exhibited a drastic elevation in plasma triglyceride levels in the pre-diabetic stage that was maintained throughout the study. These findings suggest that obesity and insulin resistance are an inherent part of the TH phenotype and glucose intolerance is evident preceding progression to overt diabetes in male TH mice.