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Open Access Transplantation of Insulin-Producing Cells Derived From Umbilical Cord Stromal Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Treat NOD Mice

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Diabetes mellitus can be treated with islet transplantation, although there is a scarcity of donors. This study investigated whether human mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) from umbilical cord stroma could be induced to differentiate into insulin-producing cells and the effects of retro-orbital injection of human insulin-producing cells for the treatment of nonobese diabetic (NOD) mice. MSCs were isolated from human umbilical cord stroma and induced to differentiate into insulin-producing cells using differentiation medium. Differentiated cells were evaluated by immunocytochemistry, RT-PCR, and real-time PCR. C-peptide release, both spontaneous and after glucose challenge, was measured by ELISA. Insulin-producing cells were then transplanted into NOD mice. Blood glucose levels and body weights were monitored weekly. Human nuclei and C-peptide were detected in mouse livers by immunohistochemistry. Pancreatic β-cell development-related genes were expressed in the differentiated insulin-producing cells. Differentiated cells' C-peptide release in vitro increased after glucose challenge. Further, in vivo glucose tolerance tests showed that blood sugar levels decreased after the cells' transplantation into NOD mice. After transplantation, insulin-producing cells containing human C-peptide and human nuclei were located in the liver. Thus, we demonstrated that differentiated insulin-producing cells from human umbilical cord stromal MSCs transplanted into NOD mice could alleviate hyperglycemia in diabetic mice.

Keywords: Diabetes; Insulin-producing cells; Mesenchymal stem cells; Umbilical cord stroma

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Institute of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Medicine, National Yang Ming University, Taipei, Taiwan, ROC

Publication date: March 1, 2011

More about this publication?
  • 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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