Moreover, this methodology excels when applied to this particular type of cell, which is very difficult to work with because of its scarcity ([alpha]-cells represent only about 10-20% of the total number of islet cells
, i.e., ~ 150-300 cells per islet).
The islet cells
began producing insulin within minutes of entering the liver, Dr.
'We have shown that cell transplantation, with both pancreatic islet cells
and previously with hepatocyte (liver) cells, can offer patients a valuable alternative to conventional treatments.'
Richard Lane, 61, from Bromley, Kent, is the first person in the UK to have a fully successful islet cell
transplantation in a patient with Type 1 diabetes.
Until recently most research trying to treat Type I diabetes assumed the patient would receive a islet cells
transplant to replace those killed by the marauding white blood cells.
The hope is that these newly-made islet cells
will be just as responsive to glucose levels as normal islet cells
When islet cells
begin to fail, insulin production falls and blood sugar levels rise.
You have these islet cells
that are built-in sensors or thermostats.
A long-standing problem in transplantation of islet cells
is the rapid and significant loss of functionality once the cells are harvested from the donor.
In the case of childhood-onset diabetics, who seldom live more than forty years after diagnosis, early treatment with injected islet cells
(in place of a transplant) could greatly improve their prospects, especially if it could be done without the need for immunosuppression or the threat of rejection of transplanted islet cells
The insulin enhancer binding protein, Isl-1, is a homeodomain (HD) containing transcription factor that regulates the expression of insulin in differentiated islet cells
, influences asymmetric stem cell differentiation in the development of mature islet cells
, and is absolutely required for the development of motor neurons.
Researchers at Kyoto University's Institute for Frontier Medical Sciences said Wednesday they have succeeded in growing insulin-secreting islet cells
from the embryo stem cells of mice and in lowering the blood sugar levels of diabetic mice by transplanting the cells into them.