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Transplant Proc. 2010 Jul-Aug;42(6):2250-1. doi: 10.1016/j.transproceed.2010.05.132.

Functional and survival analysis of isolated human islets.

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  • 1Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Metabolic Unit, University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.



Pancreatic islet transplantation has become one of the potential treatments for type 1 diabetes. We evaluated functional and viability parameters of isolated islets in relation to donors clinical characteristics and preparation variables.


Islets were isolated from 70 nondiabetic multiorgan donors of overall age of 62.5 +/- 15.9 years. There were 41 men and 29 women. Their mean body mass index (BMI) was 25.62 +/- 3.09 kg/m(2). We evaluated the islet number (IEQ/g pancreatic tissue) insulin release (IR; microU/islet/min) in response to 3.3 (g) or 16.7 (G) mmol/L glucose; calcium flux concentration (CFC); and islet cell viability.


IEQ was 5249 +/- 1505, with 73.7 +/- 14.96% viable islet cells. IR was 0.03 +/- 0.01 at g and 0.11 +/- 0.06 at G (stimulation index [S] = 3.24 +/- 1.96). CFC was 1.95 +/- 1.03 DeltaRFU. We observed positive correlations between viable cells and IR at g (R(2) = 0.260; P = .013), IR at G (R(2) = 0.165; P = .013), and CFC (R(2) = 0.175; P = .047). A positive correlation was documented between BMI and g (R(2) = 0.245; P = .016) and negative correlations between age with SI (R(2) = 0.188; P = .052) and cold ischemia time with IEQ (R(2) = 0.865; P = .0061).


These results showed that quality control of isolated human pancreatic islets allowed assessment of beta-cell function and survival before transplantation, revealing several important variables.

Copyright 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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