|New achievement in Pancreas Cell Transplants|
|In this procedure doctors injected an average of 350,000 islet cells directly into liver, a procedure that does not require major surgery. After this the liver started producing Insulin. This can have a far reaching effect on the treatment of the diabetics especially the Type I diabetes. Its too early for insulin injecting diabetics to be happy. The real problem is to find source for the islet cells of pancreas.Eight patients with severe diabetes were able to throw away their insulin for as long as 15 months – after a new cell-transplant procedure.
Islet cell transplants require whole pancreases, from which the insulin-producing cells are extracted. Each patient requires organs from at least two cadaver donors, meaning, a very small number of patients can benefit from this procedure. But researchers are hopeful they can find other sources of the precious cells, perhaps growing them from “stem” cells that are capable of forming various tissues.
Because of the risks of side-effects posed by anti-rejection drugs, the researchers at University of Alberta in Edmonton did the procedure only in patients with Type I diabetes, that was so severe that patients’ blood sugar couldn’t be controlled even with regular insulin shots. One woman, a junior high school teacher, regularly fell into a diabetic coma.
That woman and seven others “quickly attained insulin independence” after doctors injected an average of 350,000 islet cells directly into their livers, a procedure that does not require major surgery. To achieve good control of blood sugar, seven patients so far have required a second transplant, while an eighth has required a third.
Once researchers solve the problem of where to get human islet cells in large quantities, the real benefit of this islets cells transplant can be given to the patients.