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Definition of Beta cell, pancreatic

Beta cell, pancreatic: A type of cell in the pancreas (the organ of the digestive system located behind the stomach). Within the pancreas, the beta cells are located in areas called the islets of Langerhans. They constitute the predominant type of cell in the islets. The beta cells are important because they make insulin. Degeneration of the beta cells is the main cause of type I (insulin-dependent) diabetes mellitus.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=6863
Last Editorial Review: 8/28/2013

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