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J Transplant. 2011;2011:637692. doi: 10.1155/2011/637692. Epub 2011 Oct 20.

Current status of immunomodulatory and cellular therapies in preclinical and clinical islet transplantation.

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1
Department of Surgery, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA 22908, USA.

Abstract

Clinical islet transplantation is a β-cell replacement strategy that represents a possible definitive intervention for patients with type 1 diabetes, offering substantial benefits in terms of lowering daily insulin requirements and reducing incidences of debilitating hypoglycemic episodes and unawareness. Despite impressive advances in this field, a limiting supply of islets, inadequate means for preventing islet rejection, and the deleterious diabetogenic and nephrotoxic side effects associated with chronic immunosuppressive therapy preclude its wide-spread applicability. Islet transplantation however allows a window of opportunity for attempting various therapeutic manipulations of islets prior to transplantation aimed at achieving superior transplant outcomes. In this paper, we will focus on the current status of various immunosuppressive and cellular therapies that promote graft function and survival in preclinical and clinical islet transplantation with special emphasis on the tolerance-inducing capacity of regulatory T cells as well as the β-cells regenerative capacity of stem cells.

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