Cell Replacement Strategies Aimed at Reconstitution of the β-Cell Compartment in Type 1 Diabetes

  1. Juan Domínguez-Bendala4
  1. 1Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC
  2. 2Université Catholique de Louvain, Brussels, Belgium
  3. 3Oxford University Hospitals NHS Trust, Oxford, U.K.
  4. 4Diabetes Research Institute, University of Miami, Miami, FL
  1. Corresponding author: Giuseppe Orlando, gorlando{at}


Emerging technologies in regenerative medicine have the potential to restore the β-cell compartment in diabetic patients, thereby overcoming the inadequacies of current treatment strategies and organ supply. Novel approaches include: 1) Encapsulation technology that protects islet transplants from host immune surveillance; 2) stem cell therapies and cellular reprogramming, which seek to regenerate the depleted β-cell compartment; and 3) whole-organ bioengineering, which capitalizes on the innate properties of the pancreas extracellular matrix to drive cellular repopulation. Collaborative efforts across these subfields of regenerative medicine seek to ultimately produce a bioengineered pancreas capable of restoring endocrine function in patients with insulin-dependent diabetes.

  • Received November 13, 2013.
  • Accepted January 9, 2014.

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