Pancreatic-Stem-Cells-Research Articles

From a clinical perspective, the pancreas is a crucial focus of somatic cell research, because it's a beautiful target for cell replacement therapy. Insulin-producing β-cells in the pancreatic islets of Langerhans are destroyed by autoimmune attack in Type 1 diabetes and self-renewing stem cells might provide β-cells for transplantation. From a developmental biology perspective, the role of stem cells within the pancreas may be a fascinating problem. New cells are produced during adulthood, but their origin isn't clear. Although much focus is on β-cell progenitors, it is not known what role such cells play during pancreas maintenance and regeneration, or whether the adult pancreas contains a population of true stem cells. In this chapter, we review evidence for the existence and identity of pancreatic progenitor and stem cells and describe the standards for experimental demonstration of such cells. The transplantation of insulin-producing islets has helped some patients live without the need for insulin injections, but there are not enough cells to treat the millions of people who have Type 1 diabetes. A regenerative solution could bridge this gap. A team at the University Of Miami Miller School Of Medicine's Diabetes Research Institute has found the source of pancreatic stem cells which will become insulin-releasing beta cells. The discovery could pave the way for regenerative cell therapies for Type 1 diabetes.    

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