We previously reported that dye was effective to prevent the leakage of enzyme solutions from pancreatic glands during an islet isolation procedure. However, the dye used for islet isolation has not yet been optimized. In this study, we focused on pyoktanin blue (PB), diagnogreen (DG), and indigo carmine (IC) as potential candidates among clinically established dyes. A serial dilution assay was performed to determine minimal effective concentrations of each dye for detecting damaged pancreatic tissues. According to the outcome of serial dilution assays, double minimum effective concentrations of each dye were used for in vitro toxicity assays on islets and used in the isolation procedure to investigate whether they adversely affect islet isolation efficiency. The evaluations included islet yield, ADP/ATP, ATP/DNA, glucose stimulation test, and insulin/DNA assays. Islet viability cultured with PB contained medium was significantly lower than the other dyes. DG and IC appeared to be non-toxic to the islets. In isolation experiments, the islet yield in the DG group was considerably lower than that in the Control group, suggesting that DG might inhibit enzyme activity. The present study demonstrates that IC could be a promising candidate for an effective dye to detect damaged pancreatic tissues without affecting the enzyme activity and islet quality.
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