Available online 22 January 2014Source:Peptides Author(s): Zheng Ruipan , Meng Xiangzhi , Liu li , Zhang Ying , Qiao Mingliang , Jing Peng , Liu jingwei , Zhao zijun , Gao Yan Neuropeptide Y (NPY) inhibits insulin secretion. Increased numbers of pancreatic islet cells expressing NPY has been observed in type 1 diabetic rats. To understand the functional significance of NPY expression in islet cells, we investigated the effects of high fat feeding and diabetic conditions on the expression and location of NPY expressing cells in normal and diabetic rats. Twenty rats were maintained on either normal chow (ND) or a high fat dietary regimen (HFD) for 4 weeks. In half of each group, type 1 or type 2 diabetes (groups T1DM and T2DM, respectively) was induced by injection of streptozotocin. At 8 weeks rats were euthanized and the pancreases were processed for immunofluorescence labeling (NPY/insulin, NPY/glucagon, NPY/somatostatin, and NPY/pancreatic polypeptide). Compared with the ND group, HFD rats had significantly fewer alpha cells, but beta cells were similar, while T1DM and T2DM rats showed significant increases in the proportions of alpha, delta, and PP cells. Robust increases in NPY-positive islet cells were found in the HFD, T1DM, and T2DM rats compared with ND controls. In ND rats, 99.7% of the NPY-positive cells were PP cells. However, high fat feeding and diabetes resulted in significant increases in NPY-positive delta cells, with concomitant decreases in NPY-positive PP cells. In summary, high-fat feeding and diabetes resulted in changes in the hormonal composition of pancreatic islet and increased number of NPY-expressing islet cells. Under diabetic conditions NPY expression switched from predominantly a characteristic of PP cells to predominantly that of delta cells. This may be a factor in reduced pancreatic hormone secretion during diabetes.