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Adv Drug Deliv Rev. 2008 Jan 14;60(2):114-23. Epub 2007 Oct 11.

Beta-cell replacement for insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.

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Department of Human Molecular Genetics and Biochemistry, Sackler School of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Ramat Aviv, Tel Aviv, 69978 Israel.


Beta-cell replacement is considered the optimal treatment for type 1 diabetes, however, it is hindered by a shortage of human organ donors. Given the difficulty of expanding adult beta cells in vitro, stem/progenitor cells, which can be expanded in tissue culture and induced to differentiate into multiple cell types, represent an attractive source for generation of cells with beta-cell properties. In the absence of well-characterized human pancreas progenitor cells, investigators are exploring the use of embryonic stem cells and stem/progenitor cells from other tissues. Once abundant surrogate beta cells are available, the challenge will be to protect them from recurring autoimmunity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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