The clinical results recently reported by the Edmonton group in recipients of allogeneic islet grafts, all of whom achieved at least temporary insulin independence, has rekindled interest in transplantation of islets of Langerhans as a means to cure diabetes. Long-term islet graft survival has been achieved in a non-human primate pre-clinical model with a protocol of T-cell signaling-blockade using a new monoclonal antibody. Islet xenotransplantation (namely the use of animal islets, with the aim of transplanting them into humans), or stem cell technology (the controlled differentiation of stem cells to obtain specialised cells for the treatment of diabetes) are other procedures currently being evaluated in animal models. The recent clinical success suggests that, in the near future, diabetes might be treated by islet transplantation early in the clinical course of the disease before the development of complications, and without the risks associated with conventional immunosuppression.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Swiss Medical Weekly|
|State||Published - Dec 22 2001|
- Islets of Langerhans
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