Adhesion of pancreatic beta cells to biopolymer films.
ABSTRACT: Dramatic reversal of Type 1 diabetes in patients receiving pancreatic islet transplants continues to prompt vigorous research concerning the basic mechanisms underlying patient turnaround. At the most fundamental level, transplanted islets must maintain viability and function in vitro and in vivo and should be protected from host immune rejection. Our previous reports showed enhancement of islet viability and insulin secretion per tissue mass for small islets (<125 mum) as compared with large islets (>125 mum), thus, demonstrating the effect of enhancing the mass transport of islets (i.e. increasing tissue surface area to volume ratio). Here, we report the facile dispersion of rat islets into individual cells that are layered onto the surface of a biopolymer film towards the ultimate goal of improving mass transport in islet tissue. The tightly packed structure of intact islets was disrupted by incubating in calcium-free media resulting in fragmented islets, which were further dispersed into individual or small groups of cells by using a low concentration of papain. The dispersed cells were screened for adhesion to a range of biopolymers and the nature of cell adhesion was characterized for selected groups by quantifying adherent cells, measuring the surface area coverage of the cells, and immunolabeling cells for adhesion proteins interacting with selected biopolymers. Finally, beta cells in suspension were centrifuged to form controlled numbers of cell layers on films for future work determining the mass transport limitations in the adhered tissue constructs. (c) 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Biopolymers 91: 676-685, 2009.This article was originally published online as an accepted preprint. The "Published Online" date corresponds to the preprint version. You can request a copy of the preprint by emailing the Biopolymers editorial office at email@example.com.
Project description:Since the report of the Edmonton protocol in 2000, islet transplantation has been implemented worldwide, and xenotransplantation using porcine islets has also been reported. In addition, many basic experiments using pancreatic islets and exocrine tissue after isolation have been reported. Recently, exocrine cells have been found to be essential for inducing the differentiation of pancreatic islets. Therefore, the importance of the culture conditions for pancreatic tissue when conducting experiments using pancreatic tissue is also increasing. In this study, we focused on the coat material and examined the adhesive properties of porcine pancreatic islets and exocrine tissue after isolation. Porcine islet isolation was performed, and isolated islets (purity ?95%) and exocrine tissue (purity ?99%) were used to achieve adhesion to several extracellular matrixes, fibronectin, collagen type I, collagen type IV, laminin I, fibrinogen, and bovine serum albumin (BSA). DMEM with 0.5% FBS was used as the assay medium. For exocrine tissue, the adhesion was promoted in fibronectin, collagen type I, laminin I, and fibrinogen. The adhesive ability to fibronectin was more than twice that to BSA, while the adhesive ability to collagen type I, laminin I, and fibrinogen was less than twice that to BSA. For islets, the adhesive ability to fibronectin was weaker than that of exocrine tissue. Furthermore, the adhesion effect in fibronectin was obtained within 30 minutes and in medium containing little serum for both islets and exocrine tissues. These data suggest that fibronectin may be useful for the adhesion of pancreatic tissue.
Project description:Islet transplantation is a promising treatment for type 1 diabetes but is hampered by a shortage of donor human tissue and early failure. Research on islet cell transplantation includes finding new sources of cells and immunoisolation to protect from immune assault and tumourigenic potential. Small islet cell aggregates were studied to determine if their survival and function were superior to intact islets within microcapsules because of reduced oxygen transport limitation and inflammatory mediators.Islet cell aggregates were generated by dispersing rat islets into single cells and allowing them to re-aggregate in culture. Rat islets and islet cell aggregates were encapsulated in barium alginate capsules and studied when cultured in low (0.5% or 2%) or normal (20%) oxygen, or transplanted into mice.Encapsulated islet cell aggregates were able to survive and function better than intact islets in terms of oxygen-consumption rate, nuclei counts, insulin-to-DNA ratio and glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. They also had reduced expression of pro-inflammatory genes. Islet cell aggregates showed reduced tissue necrosis in an immunodeficient transplant model and a much greater proportion of diabetic xenogeneic transplant recipients receiving islet cell aggregates (tissue volume of only 85 islet equivalents) had reversal of hyperglycaemia than recipients receiving intact islets.These aggregates were superior to intact islets in terms of survival and function in low-oxygen culture and during transplantation and are likely to provide more efficient utilisation of islet tissue, a finding of importance for the future of cell therapy for diabetes.
Project description:Clinical islet transplantation is a promising treatment for patients with type 1 diabetes. However, pancreatic islets vary in size and shape affecting their survival and function after transplantation because of mass transport limitations. To reduce diffusion restrictions and improve islet cell survival, the generation of islets with optimal dimensions by dispersion followed by reassembly of islet cells, can help limit the length of diffusion pathways. This study describes a microwell platform that supports the controlled and reproducible production of three-dimensional pancreatic cell clusters of human donor islets. We observed that primary human islet cell aggregates with a diameter of 100-150 ?m consisting of about 1000 cells best resembled intact pancreatic islets as they showed low apoptotic cell death (<2%), comparable glucose-responsiveness and increasing PDX1, MAFA and INSULIN gene expression with increasing aggregate size. The re-associated human islet cells showed an a-typical core shell configuration with beta cells predominantly on the outside unlike human islets, which became more randomized after implantation similar to native human islets. After transplantation of these islet cell aggregates under the kidney capsule of immunodeficient mice, human C-peptide was detected in the serum indicating that beta cells retained their endocrine function similar to human islets. The agarose microwell platform was shown to be an easy and very reproducible method to aggregate pancreatic islet cells with high accuracy providing a reliable tool to study cell-cell interactions between insuloma and/or primary islet cells.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Pancreatic islets of Langerhans originate from endocrine progenitors within the pancreatic ductal epithelium. Concomitant with differentiation of these progenitors into hormone-producing cells such cells delaminate, aggregate and migrate away from the ductal epithelium. The cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating islet cell delamination and cell migration are poorly understood. Extensive biochemical and cell biological studies using cultured cells demonstrated that Rac1, a member of the Rho family of small GTPases, acts as a key regulator of cell migration. RESULTS: To address the functional role of Rac1 in islet morphogenesis, we generated transgenic mice expressing dominant negative Rac1 under regulation of the Rat Insulin Promoter. Blocking Rac1 function in beta cells inhibited their migration away from the ductal epithelium in vivo. Consistently, transgenic islet cell spreading was compromised in vitro. We also show that the EGF-receptor ligand betacellulin induced actin remodelling and cell spreading in wild-type islets, but not in transgenic islets. Finally, we demonstrate that cell-cell contact E-cadherin increased as a consequence of blocking Rac1 activity. CONCLUSION: Our data support a model where Rac1 signalling controls islet cell migration by modulating E-cadherin-mediated cell-cell adhesion. Furthermore, in vitro experiments show that betacellulin stimulated islet cell spreading and actin remodelling is compromised in transgenic islets, suggesting that betacellulin may act as a regulator of Rac1 activity and islet migration in vivo. Our results further emphasize Rac1 as a key regulator of cell migration and cell adhesion during tissue and organ morphogenesis.
Project description:The neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) is required for cell type segregation during pancreatic islet organogenesis. We have investigated the functional consequences of ablating NCAM on pancreatic beta-cell function. In vivo, NCAM(-/-) mice exhibit impaired glucose tolerance and basal hyperinsulinemia. Insulin secretion from isolated NCAM(-/-) islets is enhanced at glucose concentrations below 15 mM but inhibited at higher concentrations. Glucagon secretion from pancreatic alpha-cells evoked by low glucose was also severely impaired in NCAM(-/-) islets. The diminution of insulin secretion is not attributable to defective glucose metabolism or glucose sensing (documented as glucose-induced changes in intracellular Ca(2+) and K(ATP)-channel activity). Resting K(ATP) conductance was lower in NCAM(-/-) beta-cells than wild-type cells, and this difference was abolished when F-actin was disrupted by cytochalasin D (1 muM). In wild-type beta-cells, the submembrane actin network disassembles within 10 min during glucose stimulation (30 mM), an effect not seen in NCAM(-/-) beta-cells. Cytochalasin D eliminated this difference and normalized insulin and glucagon secretion in NCAM(-/-) islets. Capacitance measurements of exocytosis indicate that replenishment of the readily releasable granule pool is suppressed in NCAM(-/-) alpha- and beta-cells. Our data suggest that remodeling of the submembrane actin network is critical to normal glucose regulation of both insulin and glucagon secretion.
Project description:Major clinical challenges associated with islet transplantation for type 1 diabetes include shortage of donor organs, poor engraftment due to ischemia, and need for immunosuppressive medications. Semipermeable membrane capsules can immunoprotect transplanted islets by blocking passage of the host's immune components while providing exchange of glucose, insulin, and other small molecules. However, capsules-based diffusive transport often exacerbates ischemic injury to islets by reducing the rate of oxygen and nutrient transport. We previously reported the efficacy of a newly developed semipermeable ultrafiltration membrane, the silicon nanopore membrane (SNM) under convective-driven transport, in limiting the passage of pro-inflammatory cytokines while overcoming the mass transfer limitations associated with diffusion through nanometer-scale pores. In this study, we report that SNM-encapsulated mouse islets perfused in culture solution under convection outperformed those under diffusive conditions in terms of magnitude (1.49-fold increase in stimulation index and 3.86-fold decrease in shutdown index) and rate of insulin secretion (1.19-fold increase and 6.45-fold decrease during high and low glucose challenges), respectively. Moreover, SNM-encapsulated mouse islets under convection demonstrated rapid glucose-insulin sensing within a physiologically relevant time-scale while retaining healthy islet viability even under cytokine exposure. We conclude that encapsulation of islets with SNM under convection improves islet in vitro functionality. This approach may provide a novel strategy for islet transplantation in the clinical setting.
Project description:Pancreatic islets are highly vascularized mini-organs, and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-A is a critical factor in the development of islet vascularization. To investigate the role of VEGF-A and endothelial cells (ECs) in adult islets, we used complementary genetic approaches to temporally inactivate VEGF-A in developing mouse pancreatic and islet progenitor cells or in adult ?-cells. Inactivation of VEGF-A early in development dramatically reduced pancreatic and islet vascularization, leading to reduced ?-cell proliferation in both developing and adult islets and, ultimately, reduced ?-cell mass and impaired glucose clearance. When VEGF-A was inactivated in adult ?-cells, islet vascularization was reduced twofold. Surprisingly, even after 3 months of reduced islet vascularization, islet architecture and ?-cell gene expression, mass, and function were preserved with only a minimal abnormality in glucose clearance. These data show that normal pancreatic VEGF-A expression is critical for the recruitment of ECs and the subsequent stimulation of endocrine cell proliferation during islet development. In contrast, although VEGF-A is required for maintaining the specialized vasculature observed in normal adult islets, adult ?-cells can adapt and survive long-term reductions in islet vascularity. These results indicate that VEGF-A and islet vascularization have a lesser role in adult islet function and ?-cell mass.
Project description:Context:Reduced ?-cell mass, impaired islet function, and dedifferentiation are considered causal to development of hyperglycemia and type 2 diabetes. In human cohort studies, changes of islet cell-specific expression patterns have been associated with diabetes but not directly with in vivo insulin secretion. Objective:This study investigates alterations of islet gene expression and corresponding gene variants in the context of in vivo glycemic traits from the same patients. Methods:Fasting blood was collected before surgery, and pancreatic tissue was frozen after resection from 18 patients undergoing pancreatectomy. Islet tissue was isolated by laser capture microdissection. Islet transcriptome was analyzed using microarray and quantitative RT-PCR. Proteins were examined by immunohistochemistry and western blotting. The association of gene variants with insulin secretion was investigated with oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT)-derived insulin secretion measured in a large cohort of subjects at increased risk of type 2 diabetes and with hyperglycemic clamp in a subset. Results:Differential gene expression between islets from normoglycemic and hyperglycemic patients was prominent for the glycolytic enzyme ALDOB and the obesity-associated gene FAIM2. The mRNA levels of both genes correlated negatively with insulin secretion and positively with HbA1c. Islets of hyperglycemic patients displayed increased ALDOB immunoreactivity in insulin-positive cells, whereas ?- and ?-cells were negative. Exposure of isolated islets to hyperglycemia augmented ALDOB expression. The minor allele of the ALDOB variant rs550915 associated with significantly higher levels of C-peptide and insulin during OGTT and hyperglycemic clamp, respectively. Conclusion:Our analyses suggest that increased ALDOB expression in human islets is associated with lower insulin secretion.
Project description:Islet alpha- and delta-cells are spared autoimmune destruction directed at beta-cells in type 1 diabetes resulting in an apparent increase of non-beta endocrine cells in the islet core. We determined how islet remodeling in autoimmune diabetes compares to streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetes. Islet cell mass, proliferation, and immune cell infiltration in pancreas sections from diabetic NOD mice and mice with STZ-induced diabetes was assessed using quantitative image analysis. Serial sections were stained for various beta-cell markers and Ngn3, typically restricted to embryonic tissue, was only upregulated in diabetic NOD mouse islets. Serum levels of insulin, glucagon and GLP-1 were measured to compare hormone levels with respect to disease state. Total pancreatic alpha-cell mass did not change as autoimmune diabetes developed in NOD mice despite the proportion of islet area comprised of alpha- and delta-cells increased. By contrast, alpha- and delta-cell mass was increased in mice with STZ-induced diabetes. Serum levels of glucagon reflected these changes in alpha-cell mass: glucagon levels remained constant in NOD mice over time but increased significantly in STZ-induced diabetes. Increased serum GLP-1 levels were found in both models of diabetes, likely due to alpha-cell expression of prohormone convertase 1/3. Alpha- or delta-cell mass in STZ-diabetic mice did not normalize by replacement of insulin via osmotic mini-pumps or islet transplantation. Hence, the inflammatory milieu in NOD mouse islets may restrict alpha-cell expansion highlighting important differences between these two diabetes models and raising the possibility that increased alpha-cell mass might contribute to the hyperglycemia observed in the STZ model.
Project description:Pretransplant islet culture is associated with the loss of islet cell mass and insulin secretory function. Insulin secretion from islet ?-cells is primarily controlled by mitochondrial ATP generation in response to elevations in extracellular glucose. Coculture of islets with mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) improves islet insulin secretory function in vitro, which correlates with superior islet graft function in vivo. This study aimed to determine whether the improved islet function is associated with mitochondrial transfer from MSCs to cocultured islets. We have demonstrated mitochondrial transfer from human adipose MSCs to human islet ?-cells in coculture. Fluorescence imaging showed that mitochondrial transfer occurs, at least partially, through tunneling nanotube (TNT)-like structures. The extent of mitochondrial transfer to clinically relevant human islets was greater than that to experimental mouse islets. Human islets are subjected to more extreme cellular stressors than mouse islets, which may induce "danger signals" for MSCs, initiating the donation of MSC-derived mitochondria to human islet ?-cells. Our observations of increased MSC-mediated mitochondria transfer to hypoxia-exposed mouse islets are consistent with this and suggest that MSCs are most effective in supporting the secretory function of compromised ?-cells. Ensuring optimal MSC-derived mitochondria transfer in preculture and/or cotransplantation strategies could be used to maximize the therapeutic efficacy of MSCs, thus enabling the more widespread application of clinical islet transplantation.