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Open Access Mizoribine as Sole Immunosuppressive Agent in Islet Xenotransplantation Models: A Candidate Immunosuppressant Causing no Adverse Effects on Islets

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Mizoribine (MZ) inhibits the differentiation and proliferation of helper T and B cells after antigen recognition by suppressing the purine biosynthesis pathway and nucleic acid synthesis. MZ has been used in kidney transplantation, but distinct data are unavailable for islet transplantation. The present study investigated the efficacy of MZ for islet xenotransplantation. Immunosuppressive effects of MZ were determined by mixed lymphocyte reaction (MLR) assay in vitro. Toxicities for Wistar rat islets were determined by adenosine triphosphate (ATP) contents of islets during 3-day culture and stimulation index in response to glucose after culture. Immunosuppressive effects in vivo were tested in a Wistar-to-B6 islet xenotransplantation model. MZ was administered continuously for 28 days subcutaneously or intramuscularly. MZ inhibited MLR response by approximately 50% at 0.1 μg/ml. ATP contents decreased with MZ >100 μg/ml, while stimulation index was maintained. Continuous infusion of MZ at 10 mg/kg maintained blood concentrations at 0.13‐0.19 μg/ml, while intramuscular injection of MZ at 100 mg/kg/day (peak 520 μg/ml at 1 h postinjection) resulted in below measurable levels (<0.03 μg/ml) within 24 h. Graft survival was significantly prolonged following continuous infusion of 10 mg/kg/day compared to controls (31.0 ± 9.5 vs. 13.2 ± 5.2 days; p = 0.002). Furthermore, animals with intramuscular injection at doses of 3.2, 10, or 100 mg/kg/day showed significantly longer graft survival (20.0 ± 7.5, 22.0 ± 7.31, and 24.5 ± 8.1 days, respectively; p < 0.05 each). Histological examination showed significant suppression of lymphocyte infiltration by MZ administration. MZ showed immunosuppressive effects in an experimental islet xenotransplantation model without adverse effects on endocrine function of islet grafts.

Keywords: Immunosuppression; Islet xenotransplantation; Mizoribine (MZ)

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Surgery I, School of Medicine, Fukushima Medical University, Fukushima, Japan

Publication date: 2012-02-01

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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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