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Open Access Technique of Endoscopic Biopsy of Islet Allografts Transplanted Into the Gastric Submucosal Space in Pigs

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Currently, islet cells are transplanted into the liver via portal vein infusion. One disadvantage of this approach is that it is not possible to adequately biopsy the islets in the liver to assess for rejection. Islet transplantation (Tx) into the gastric submucosal space (GSMS) can be performed endoscopically and has the potential advantage of histological evaluation by endoscopic biopsy. The aim of this study was to determine whether a representative allograft sample could be obtained endoscopically. We performed islet Tx into the GSMS in nonimmunosuppressed pigs using simple endoscopic submucosal injection. Islets were transplanted at four sites. Endoscopic ultrasonography and biopsy of the transplanted islets at two sites by modified endoscopic submucosal dissection were carried out successfully in all pigs 5 days after islet Tx. Tissue obtained at both biopsy and necropsy (including full-thickness sections of the gastric wall around the sites of the remaining islets and biopsies) were examined by histology and immunohistochemistry to confirm the presence of the islet grafts and any features of rejection. Representative allograft sampling was successfully obtained from all biopsy sites. All biopsies included islets with insulin-positive staining. There was significant CD3+ and CD68+ cell infiltration in the islet masses obtained at biopsy and from sections taken at necropsy, with similar histopathological features. Endoscopic biopsy of islet allografts in the GSMS is feasible, provides accurate histopathological data, and would provide a significant advance if translated into clinical practice.
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Keywords: Biopsy of islets; Endoscopy; Gastric submucosal space (GSMS); Pig; Transplantation of islets

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2013-12-23

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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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