The new source of islet cells

October 25, 2007

The shortage of islet cells limits the development of islet transplantation. One new approach was reported in the October 21 issue of the World Journal of Gastroenterology because of its great significance in enhancing the output of islet cells. This article will undoubtedly bring benefit to diabetic patients.

The article describes the differentiation of rat pancreatic ductal epithelial cells into insulin-producing cells by the transfection of PDX-1. In recent years, though great efforts have been made to differentiate embryonic stem cells, pancreatic ductal epithelial multipotent progenitor cells and bone marrow stem cells into islet cells, the process of cell differentiation and growth is long. Moreover, the amount of islet cells of differentiation, and the insulin released by islets, is not enough to meet the clinical needs.

To shorten the process of differentiation and enhance the output of insulin-producing cells and increase the amount of insulin-releasing, Dr Liu et al. transfected PDX-1 into primary pancreatic ductal epithelial cells and then differentiated the transfected cells into insulin-producing cells. In contrast, the expression of PDX-1 and insulin mRNA and protein were detectable in the transfected cells. Endogenous PDX-1 might play an important role during differentiation and the transfected cells can produce more insulin-releasing cells and release more insulin after induction.

The results of this study suggest a promising future for many diabetic patients who need islets transplantation. Due to the high percentage of diabetes mellitus and severe complications around the world, this case reported by Dr. Liu et al. is surely worth the attention of the researchers of diabetes.

Source: World Journal of Gastroenterology

Explore further: Functional nerve cells from skin cells

Related Stories

Functional nerve cells from skin cells

May 21, 2014

A new method of generating mature nerve cells from skin cells could greatly enhance understanding of neurodegenerative diseases, and could accelerate the development of new drugs and stem cell-based regenerative medicine.

Stem cells develop best in 3-D

November 21, 2012

Scientists from The Danish Stem Cell Center (DanStem) at the University of Copenhagen are contributing important knowledge about how stem cells develop best into insulin-producing cells. In the long term this new knowledge ...

Treating vascular disorders with a cell-based strategy

October 18, 2012

A research team at Weill Cornell Medical College has discovered a way to utilize diagnostic prenatal amniocentesis cells, reprogramming them into abundant and stable endothelial cells capable of regenerating damaged blood ...

Bioengineers reprogram muscles to combat degeneration

September 22, 2011

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have turned back the clock on mature muscle tissue, coaxing it back to an earlier stem cell stage to form new muscle. Moreover, they showed in mice that the newly reprogrammed ...

Researchers engineer adult stem cells that do not age

September 22, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- Biomedical researchers at the University at Buffalo have engineered adult stem cells that scientists can grow continuously in culture, a discovery that could speed development of cost-effective treatments ...

Recommended for you

Machine Translates Thoughts into Speech in Real Time

December 21, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- By implanting an electrode into the brain of a person with locked-in syndrome, scientists have demonstrated how to wirelessly transmit neural signals to a speech synthesizer. The "thought-to-speech" process ...

Quantum Theory May Explain Wishful Thinking

April 14, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Humans don’t always make the most rational decisions. As studies have shown, even when logic and reasoning point in one direction, sometimes we chose the opposite route, motivated by personal bias or simply ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.