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The Immunoprotective Effect of Sertoli Cells Coencapsulated With Islet Xenografts Is Not Dependent Upon Fas Ligand Expression

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Coencapsulation with Sertoli-enriched testicular cell fractions prolongs islet graft survival time compared with islet encapsulation alone in a highly discordant tilapia (fish)-to-mouse xenotransplantation model. Here we investigate whether Fas ligand (Fas-L) expression by testicular Sertoli cells is responsible for this additional protective effect. Sertoli-enriched testicular cell fractions (7 × 106 cells) harvested from either Fas-L-defective (group I) or Fas-L-positive (group II) mice were coencapsulated in alginate gel spheres with fish islets and then transplanted into streptozotocin-diabetic Balb/c recipients. Group III mice received encapsulated islets without coencapsulated Sertoli cells. After transplantation, blood glucose levels were monitored three times per week. Mean graft survival times for the three groups were: group I = 35.6 ± 10.2 days (n = 9), group II = 31.3 ± 9.4 days (n = 7), and group III = 23.3 ± 2.2 days (n = 6) (ANOVA, p = 0.043). Coencapsulation, regardless of the Fas-L status of the Sertoli cell donors, modestly prolonged graft survival. There was no significant difference between Fas-L-deficient and Fas-L-positive donors. Our results suggest that Fas/Fas-L interaction is not responsible for the additional protection afforded to encapsulated discordant islet xenografts by coencapsulation with Sertoli cells.

Keywords: Key words: Islet xenotransplantation; Sertoli cell

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Departments of Pathology and Surgery, IWK Health Centre and Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine and School of Biomedical Engineering, Dalhousie University Faculties of Medicine and Engineering, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3H 1V7

Publication date: 2002-01-01

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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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