Morphological and Functional Studies on Submucosal Islet Transplants in Normal and Diabetic Hamsters

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The long-term outcome of human islet allotransplantation is poor, and it remains to be seen if the Edmonton Protocol will make a positive impact upon the extension of posttransplant islet function. Hence, establishing an implantation site capable of sustaining islet allografts for a prolonged duration needs to be explored. In this study we investigated the submucosal space of the duodenum in Syrian golden hamsters. Following transplantation of more than 800 islets into streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic hamsters, basal nonfasted blood glucose levels decreased from 403 ± 14 to 143 ± 10 mg/dl within 5 weeks posttransplantation. In these animals, in vivo islet function, as determined by intravenous glucose tolerance test (IVGTT), was similar to nondiabetic controls (K values: 1.16 ± 0.12 vs. 0.95 ± 0.06, respectively) and was significantly greater than diabetic controls (K value: 0.47 ± 0.07). Islets transplanted into the submucosal space become richly vascularized within 2 weeks, and there is minimal host inflammatory infiltrate. The β-cells of the graft remain well granulated with insulin for at least 129 days. We conclude that the submucosal space is an effective engraftment site for islets that warrants further development in a large-animal model.

Keywords: Immunocytochemistry;; Key words: Diabetes mellitus

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Surgery, McGill University and The Montreal General Hospital, Montreal, Quebec H3G 1A4, Canada

Publication date: January 1, 2002

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  • Cell Transplantation publishes original, peer-reviewed research and review articles on the subject of cell transplantation and its application to human diseases. To ensure high-quality contributions from all areas of transplantation, separate section editors and editorial boards have been established. Articles deal with a wide range of topics including physiological, medical, preclinical, tissue engineering, and device-oriented aspects of transplantation of nervous system, endocrine, growth factor-secreting, bone marrow, epithelial, endothelial, and genetically engineered cells, among others. Basic clinical studies and immunological research papers are also featured. To provide complete coverage of this revolutionary field, Cell Transplantation will report on relevant technological advances, and ethical and regulatory considerations of cell transplants. Cell Transplantation is now an Open Access journal starting with volume 18 in 2009, and therefore there will be an inexpensive publication charge, which is dependent on the number of pages, in addition to the charge for color figures. This will allow work to be disseminated to a wider audience and also entitle the corresponding author to a free PDF, as well as prepublication of an unedited version of the manuscript.
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