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Since their discovery over 20 years ago, it has been recognized that adenosine triphosphate-sensitive potassium (KATP) channels play a critical role in insulin secretion. When these channels are open, insulin secretion is inhibited, and when they are shut, secretion is initiated. Consequently drugs, mutations, or changes in beta-cell metabolism that open KATP channels decrease insulin secretion and may cause diabetes, whereas those manipulations that close KATP channels have the opposite effect, increasing insulin secretion and hypoglycemia. This chapter reviews our current knowledge of the pancreatic beta-cell KATP channel, and discusses new data on its structure, structure-function relationships, and role in disease. © 2008 Springer.

Original publication





Book title

Pancreatic Beta Cell in Health and Disease

Publication Date



431 - 450