Diabetes Metab. 2010 Oct;36 Suppl 3:S45-9.
A large body of data gathered over the last decades has delineated the neuronal pathways that link the central nervous system with the autonomic innervation of the endocrine pancreas, which controls alpha- and beta-cell secretion activity and mass. These are important regulatory functions that are certainly keys for preserving the capacity of the endocrine pancreas to control glucose homeostasis over a lifetime. Identifying the cells involved in controlling the autonomic innervation of the endocrine pancreas, in response to nutrient, hormonal and environmental cues and how these cues are detected to activate neuronal activity are important goals of current research. Elucidation of these questions may possibly lead to new means for preserving or restoring defects in insulin and glucagon secretion associated with type 2 diabetes.