Type 1 diabetes is caused by a massive loss of insulin-producing beta cells. Insulin injections cannot fully compensate for the lack of beta cell induced regulation so that patients face a risk for diverse complications. Restoration of a functional beta cell mass is expected to alleviate this threat. Diabetes can be corrected by implants of beta cell-containing tissue isolated from human donor pancreases. However, this procedure has several shortcomings, among which shortage of donor organs. One of the strategies to overcome this obstacle aims at generating implants from human stem cells. Grafts prepared from human embryonic stem (hu-ES) cell lines were found to generate beta cells in mice and correct diabetes. In the present project, we wish to investigate the biology of this type of implant using grafts derived from another source of stem cells, the induced pluripotent stem cells (hu-iPS), which can be obtained post-natally, and thus in principle also from patients with diabetes. The perspective of treating patients with their own cells is attractive as it may not require immune suppressive therapy, but is at present immature to be developed. Several important questions need first to be addressed in the laboratory, such as the biology of the hu-iPS-generated implant and its ability to compensate for the lost pancreatic beta cells, a subject that will be examined in the present project.
Effective start/end date1/10/1530/09/19

    Flemish discipline codes

  • Interventional radiology

    Research areas

  • diabetes

ID: 10050118