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Survival of Microencapsulated Islets at 400 Days Posttransplantation in the Omental Pouch of NOD Mice

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The long-term durability of agarose microencapsulated islets against autoimmunity was evaluated in NOD mice. Islets were isolated from 6–8-week-old prediabetic male NOD mice and microencapsulated in 5% agarose hydrogel. Microencapsulated or nonencapsulated islets were transplanted into the omental pouch of spontaneously diabetic NOD mice. Although the diabetic NOD mice that received nonencapsulated islets experienced a temporary reversal of their hyperglycemic condition, all 10 of these mice returned to hyperglycemia within 3 weeks. In contrast, 9 of 10 mice transplanted with microencapsulated islets maintained normoglycemia for more than 100 days. Islet grafts were removed at 100, 150, 200, 300, and 400 days posttransplantation. A prompt return to hyperglycemia was observed in the mice after graft removal, indicating that the encapsulated islet grafts were responsible for maintaining euglycemia. Histological examination revealed viable islets in the capsules at all time points of graft removal. In addition, -cells within the capsules remained well granulated as revealed by the immunohistochemical detection of insulin. No immune cells were detected inside the microcapsules and no morphological irregularities of the microcapsules were observed at any time point, suggesting that the microcapsules successfully protected the islets from cellular immunity. Sufficient vascularization was evident close to the microcapsules. Considerable numbers of islets showed central necrosis at 400 days posttransplantation, although the necrotic islets made up only a small percentage of the islet grafts. Islets with central necrosis also showed abundant insulin production throughout the entire islets, except for the necrotic part. These results demonstrate the long-term durability of agarose microcapsules against autoimmunity in a syngeneic islet transplantation model in NOD mice.
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Keywords: Agarose; Autoimmunity; Islet transplantation; Microencapsulation

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: First Department of Surgery, Nara Medical University, Nara, 634-8522, Japan, Surgical-Medical Research Institute, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2N8, Canada 2: Department of Surgery, Matsubara Municipal Hospital, Osaka, 580-0044, Japan 3: Institute for Frontier Medical Sciences, Kyoto University, Kyoto, 606-8507, Japan 4: Surgical-Medical Research Institute, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2N8, Canada 5: First Department of Surgery, Nara Medical University, Nara, 634-8522, Japan

Publication date: 01 April 2006

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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.

    Cell Transplantation is now being published by SAGE. Please visit their website for the most recent issues.

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