The physiologic role of the parotid glands is more complex than its recognized salivary function. Various investigators have suggested an intriguing relationship between the parotids and the pancreas, both endocrine and exocrine in nature.

We studied in rats the contribution of salivary glands in the regulation of β-cell function in response to an acute intra-arterial glucose challenge in parotidectomized, submandibulariectomized and totally sialoadenectomized animals. Fifteen days post-parotidectomy or total sialoadenectomy, the β-cell response, at 2 minutes post-glucose infusion, diminishes and stabilizes at about 40% of the preoperative value. Concurrent with the depressed insulin secretion a correspondingly higher glucose titer was observed at 6 and 10 minutes post-glucose infusion.

In addition, the role of age on the effect of long-term sialoadenectomy and the effect of different concentrations of glucose on the β-cell response were examined in rats. The decreased sensitivity of the β-cells following parotidectomy is not dependent on the age at which the animals are operated. Even though there was less insulin available in the parotidectomized young rats, their growth was not affected. β-cell function and glucose clearance in parotidectomized animals show a progressive incompetence in the ability to cope with an increasing glucose challenge. Results indicate a rise in fasting plasma immunoreactive insulin (IRI) and glucose values in both parotidectomized and sham-operated animals over time. Animals which have been parotidectomized for 80 days have higher fasting plasma IRI and glucose levels than sham-operated controls.

Immunohistological techniques were employed in an attempt to identify the particular cell(s) in the parotid gland responsible for production of parotid hormone. Even though our data were not conclusive, they suggest that cells associated with connective tissue may be the source of parotid hormone.

LLU Discipline





Graduate School

First Advisor

John Leonora

Second Advisor

Kenneth A. Arendt

Third Advisor

Raymond G. Hall, Jr.

Fourth Advisor

Robert W. Teel

Fifth Advisor

Jean-Marc Tieche

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Parotid Gland; Island of Langerhans; Hormones -- immunology



Page Count

vi; 80

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives

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