Islet organogenesis, angiogenesis and innervation


  • Marlon E. Cerf

    Corresponding author
    1. Diabetes Discovery Platform, South African Medical Research Council, PO Box 19070, Tygerberg, 7505 Cape Town, South Africa
    Search for more papers by this author

To whom correspondence should be addressed (email


The pancreas is characterized by a major component, an exocrine and ductal system involved in digestion, and a minor component, the endocrine islets represented by islet micro-organs that tightly regulate glucose homoeostasis. Pancreatic organogenesis is strictly co-ordinated by transcription factors that are expressed sequentially to yield functional islets capable of maintaining glucose homoeostasis. Angiogenesis and innervation complete islet development, equipping islets to respond to metabolic demands. Proper regulation of this triad of processes during development is critical for establishing functional islets.