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Micro and Nanosystems


ISSN (Print): 1876-4029
ISSN (Online): 1876-4037

Transplantation of Pancreatic Islets Immobilized in Alginate-Based Microcapsules: From Animal Studies to Clinical Trials

Author(s): Meirigeng Qi, James J. McGarrigle, Yong Wang, Enza Marchese, Matthew A. Bochenek, Pilar Vaca, Maureen E. Davis, Sang Joon Ahn, Alexander Schwartz, Berit Strand, Igor Lacík and Jose Oberholzer

Volume 5, Issue 3, 2013

Page: [186 - 193] Pages: 8

DOI: 10.2174/1876402911305030006

Price: $65


Microencapsulated islet transplantation has been investigated for over three decades in an attempt to eliminate the hostile effects of long-term immunosuppressant usage and improve islet engraftment in patients suffering from Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus (T1DM). Once feasibility of the islet encapsulation process was confirmed, the biocompatibility and survival of microencapsulated islets were directly tested in different animal models. Such animal models include: immunodeficient rodents (nude and NOD-SCID mice), immunocompetent rodents, autoimmune diabetic rodents (NOD mice and BB rats), and large animals (dogs, pigs, and non-human primates). In general, the majority of microcapsules tested in vivo was found to be biocompatible with the host and retained their function. This was especially apparent in small animal models. However, greater variability and reduced biocompatibility was observed in larger animal models. Since the first attempts to introduce this methodology to the clinical field, different devices and several implementation techniques have been proposed in order to support this technology. To date islet microencapsulation in the absence of immunosuppressive medication has not yet successfully reached the clinical setting. The purpose of this review is to summarize the transplant outcomes of different microencapsulation systems and transplant models, to reveal the major obstacles that each has presented, and to propose better avenues of investigation into future studies, which may lead to a successful clinical application for this technology.

Keywords: Autoimmune Diabetic Animals, Clinical Application, Immunoprotection, Islet Transplantation, Microencapsulation, Non-Human Primate.

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