Rapamycin Ameliorates Nephropathy despite Elevating Hyperglycemia in a Polygenic Mouse Model of Type 2 Diabetes, NONcNZO10/LtJ.

Document Type


Publication Date


JAX Source

PLoS One 2014 Dec 4; 9(12):e114324.




While rapamycin treatment has been reported to have a putatively negative effect on glucose homeostasis in mammals, it has not been tested in polygenic models of type 2 diabetes. One such mouse model, NONcNZO10/LtJ, was treated chronically with rapamycin (14 ppm encapsulated in diet) and monitored for the development of diabetes. As expected, rapamycin treatment accelerated the onset and severity of hyperglycemia. However, development of nephropathy was ameliorated, as both glomerulonephritis and IgG deposition in the subendothelial tuft were markedly reduced. Insulin production and secretion appeared to be inhibited, suppressing the developing hyperinsulinemia present in untreated controls. Rapamycin treatment also reduced body weight gain. Thus, rapamycin reduced some of the complications of diabetes despite elevating hyperglycemia. These results suggest that multiple factors must be evaluated when assessing the benefit vs. hazard of rapamycin treatment in patients that have overt, or are at risk for, type 2 diabetes. Testing of rapamycin in combination with insulin sensitizers is warranted, as such compounds may ameliorate the putative negative effects of rapamycin in the type 2 diabetes environment. PLoS One 2014 Dec 4; 9(12):e114324.