Synopses & Reviews
This volume provides extensive reviews on selected subjects of critical importance for understanding the etiology and pathogenesis of insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM). Three experimental animal models are particularly important for the study of IDDM: the low dose streptozotocin induced diabetes in mice, the BB-rat and the NOD-mouse. The contributions focus on the most recent research work with these models. Two chapters describe the use of virus in experimental models of IDDM using Coxsackie B and rubella virus. One chapter reviews monoclonal autoantibodies from BB rats. A novel approach to define genetic elements associated with diabetes in the BB rat is described, and the role of MHC class II molecules in development of IDDM in mice, rats and humans is reviewed. A final chapter discusses the inferences that can be drawn from transgenic animal models on MHC molecules and the cells.
Research in diabetes has accelerated in two areas, both of which are being reviewed in CTMI. The first is the use of a variety of animal models; the second is basic research in human investigation, islet cell antigens, and mapping of genes as- sociated with susceptibility to disease. Dr. Thomas Dyrberg accepted editorial responsibility for this volume, which covers the first area. A second book, to be published later in the year, is edited by Drs. Brekkeskov and Hansen (CTMI 164, see page VI for contents). Although the contributors to both volumes represent the international scientific community, the editors are from the Hagedorn Research Laboratory in Denmark. Work at this institute and the Steno Memorial Hospital has been dedicated to research in diabetes for decades, and the insti- tutions were appointed WHO Collaborating Centres for Re- search and Training on the Pathogenesis of Diabetes Mellitus in 1983. It is worth noting that while addressing the hypothesis of the role of class II major histocompatibility glycoproteins in autoimmune diabetes (insulin-dependent diabetes, IDDM) a number of investigators established animal models in which class II molecules were expressed under the control of the rat insulin promoter. While generating interesting information on 100M, the finding of immunologic tolerance in such transgenic mice has attracted the attention of several basic immunologic laboratories for quite different reasons. Thus, we are reminded again of the Pasteur dictum that "chance favors the prepared mind. " Michael B. A. Oldstone, M. D.