Journal of Hepato-Biliary-Pancreatic Surgery

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 101–112 | Cite as

Current status of islet cell transplantation

  • Hirohito Ichii
  • Camillo Ricordi
Topics HBP treatment using cell transplantation in the near future


Despite substantial advances in islet isolation methods and immunosuppressive protocol, pancreatic islet cell transplantation remains an experimental procedure currently limited to the most severe cases of type 1 diabetes mellitus. The objectives of this treatment are to prevent severe hypoglycemic episodes in patients with hypoglycemia unawareness and to achieve a more physiological metabolic control. Insulin independence and long term-graft function with improvement of quality of life have been obtained in several international islet transplant centers. However, experimental trials of islet transplantation clearly highlighted several obstacles that remain to be overcome before the procedure could be proposed to a much larger patient population. This review provides a brief historical perspective of islet transplantation, islet isolation techniques, the transplant procedure, immunosuppressive therapy, and outlines current challenges and future directions in clinical islet transplantation.


Islet cell transplantation Immuonsuppresive protocol Pancreatic islet cells Hypoglycemic 



The authors are grateful to the members of the Human Cell Processing Facility, Preclinical Cell Processing Laboratory of the Cell Transplant Center, Clinical Islet Transplant Program, General Clinical Research Center, Imaging Core at the Diabetes Research Institute, Administrative Offices at the Diabetes Research Institute, and Organ Procurement Organizations for the continuous enthusiasm and support to our program. This work was supported in part by NIH-NCRR, GCRC MO1RR16587, NIDDK RO1-DK55347-IU42RR016603, 5R01 DK25802, ICR 5U42RR016603, JDRFI 4-200-946 and 4-2004-361, and the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cell Transplant Center, Diabetes Research InstituteUniversity of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of MedicineMiamiUSA
  2. 2.DeWitt Family Department of SurgeryUniversity of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of MedicineMiamiUSA

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