Persistence of lymphocytic choriomeningitis (LCM) virus in the islets of Langerhans was associated with mild hyperglycemia and abnormal glucose tolerance test results. Early histopathologic events consisted of occasional perivascular inflammatory mononuclear cells around both islet and acinar cells. Morphometric studies showed an increase in the size of islets from virus-infected mice. By electron microscopy, LCM virions were found within infected beta cells. Cytolytic injury of beta cells was minimal and did not account for the abnormalities of glucose metabolism. In contrast to the findings in islets, ultrastructural studies of acinar cells revealed LCM virions in abundance, vacuolar degeneration, and intracytoplasmic inclusions. This study extends the previous observation that LCM virus infection may persist in beta cells of the islets of Langerhans without causing structural injury but be associated with abnormalities resembling the chemical and histopathologic features of the early stage of Type II (adult-onset) human diabetes mellitus.