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Reestablishment of Microenvironment Is Necessary to Maintain In Vitro and In Vivo Human Islet Function

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Islet transplantation is associated with an elevated rate of early graft failure. The isolation process leads to structural and functional abnormalities. The reestablishment of the cell–matrix relationship is important to modulate the survival and function of islets. Thus, we evaluated the effect of human fibronectin (hFN) and self-assembling peptide nanofiber (SAPNF) in the ability to support islet function in vitro and after transplantation into streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice. Human isolated islets were cultured with hFN or SAPNF for 7 days. Their ability to maintain insulin production/glucose responsiveness over time was evaluated. Islets embedded in hFN, SAPNF, or alone were transplanted into STZ-induced diabetic SCID mice. Islet grafts were removed after 14 days to evaluate insulin content, insulin expression, and apoptosis. SAPNF-entrapped islets maintained satisfactory morphology/viability and capability of glucose-dependent insulin secretion for over 7 days, whereas islets cultured in hFN underwent widespread deterioration. In vivo grafts containing human islets in SAPNF showed remarkably higher insulin content and expression when compared with human islets in hFn or alone. RT-PCR revealed lower caspase-3 expression in SAPNF islets grafts. These studies indicate that the reestablishment of the cell–matrix interactions by a synthetic matrix in the immediate postisolation period is a useful tool to maintain islet functions in vitro and in vivo.

Keywords: Diabetes; Extracellular matrix; Human fibronectin; Islet graft; Pancreatic islets; Self-assembling peptide nanofiber; Transplantation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Department of Surgery, Okayama University Graduate School of Medicine and Dentistry, Okayama 700-8558, Japan 2: Department of Transplant Medicine, Kyoto University Hospital, Kyoto 606-8507, Japan 3: Baylor All Saints Islet Cell Laboratory, Fort Worth, TX 76104, USA, Baylor Institution for Immunology Research, Islet Cell Transplantation Laboratory, Baylor Research Institute, Dallas, TX 75204, USA 4: 3-DMatrix Japan, Ltd., Tokyo 102-0083, Japan

Publication date: 2008-01-01

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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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