Composition of human islet cell preparations for transplantation

C. E. Sever, A. J. Demetris, J. Zeng, P. Carroll, A. Tzakis, J. J. Fung, T. E. Starzl, C. Ricordi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


To study the cellular composition of human islet cell isolates for transplantation, formalin-fixed and paraffin-embedded cell pellets were stained by the immunoperoxidase method with a panel of antibodies characterising endocrine, epithelial, soft tissue and haematolymphoid components. Immediately after separation, the isolates contained 30-80% islet cells, differing mainly in the content of islet and acinar cells, whereas the soft tissue, ductal/ductular and haematolymphoid elements comprised a relatively constant 10-20%. After 1 week in culture the islet cell content of less highly purified isolates (30-40% islets) dropped dramatically to 5%. The highly purified isolates (70-80% islets) showed only a minimal change in cellular composition; however, approximately two-thirds of islet cells were degranulated and did not stain for insulin. Haematolymphoid components were still present in all cultured isolates. We conclude that primarily mechanical purification methods and short-term culture are not sufficient to eliminate highly immunogenic cells. In addition, short-term culture is deleterious to the isolate if a significant number of acinar cells is still present after enrichment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-238
Number of pages6
JournalActa Diabetologica
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - Sep 1992
Externally publishedYes


  • Cell isolation
  • Immunoperoxidase techniques
  • Islets of Langerhand
  • Transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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