Generation of functional human pancreatic ? cells in vitro.
ABSTRACT: The generation of insulin-producing pancreatic ? cells from stem cells in vitro would provide an unprecedented cell source for drug discovery and cell transplantation therapy in diabetes. However, insulin-producing cells previously generated from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) lack many functional characteristics of bona fide ? cells. Here, we report a scalable differentiation protocol that can generate hundreds of millions of glucose-responsive ? cells from hPSC in vitro. These stem-cell-derived ? cells (SC-?) express markers found in mature ? cells, flux Ca(2+) in response to glucose, package insulin into secretory granules, and secrete quantities of insulin comparable to adult ? cells in response to multiple sequential glucose challenges in vitro. Furthermore, these cells secrete human insulin into the serum of mice shortly after transplantation in a glucose-regulated manner, and transplantation of these cells ameliorates hyperglycemia in diabetic mice.
Project description:The generation of insulin-producing pancreatic cells from stem cells in vitro would provide an unprecedented cell source for drug discovery and cell transplantation therapy in diabetes. However, insulin-producing cells previously generated from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) lack many functional characteristics of bona fide β cells. Here we report a scalable differentiation protocol that can generate hundreds of millions of glucose-responsive β cells from hPSC in vitro. These stem cell derived cells (SC) express markers found in mature β cells, flux Ca2+ in response to glucose, package insulin into secretory granules and secrete quantities of insulin comparable to adult β cells in response to multiple sequential glucose challenges in vitro. Furthermore, these cells secrete human insulin into the serum of mice shortly after transplantation in a glucose-regulated manner, and transplantation of these cells ameliorates hyperglycemia in diabetic mice. Differentiated cells were sorted and processed for RNA isolation using the MARIS protocol published previously (PMID: 24516164.) Human embryonic stem cell (hESC) line HUES8 was differentiated into SC-beta cells. Two biological replicates were analyzed. Those data were normalized together with and compared to existing, previously published data from Hrvatin et al. ( (PMID: 24516164) from human islet -derived insulin+ cells, undifferentiated HUES8 hES cells, and insulin+ cells derived from HUES8 cells according to previously published protocols.
Project description:Diabetes mellitus (DM) is one of the most prevalent metabolic disorders. In order to replace the function of the destroyed pancreatic beta cells in diabetes, islet transplantation is the most widely practiced treatment. However, it has several limitations. As an alternative approach, human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) can provide an unlimited source of pancreatic cells that have the ability to secrete insulin in response to a high blood glucose level. However, the determination of the appropriate pancreatic lineage candidate for the purpose of cell therapy for the treatment of diabetes is still debated. While hPSC-derived beta cells are perceived as the ultimate candidate, their efficiency needs further improvement in order to obtain a sufficient number of glucose responsive beta cells for transplantation therapy. On the other hand, hPSC-derived pancreatic progenitors can be efficiently generated in vitro and can further mature into glucose responsive beta cells in vivo after transplantation. Herein, we discuss the advantages and predicted challenges associated with the use of each of the two pancreatic lineage products for diabetes cell therapy. Furthermore, we address the co-generation of functionally relevant islet cell subpopulations and structural properties contributing to the glucose responsiveness of beta cells, as well as the available encapsulation technology for these cells.
Project description:Recent advances in human pluripotent stem cell (hPSC) differentiation protocols have generated insulin-producing cells resembling pancreatic β cells. While these stem cell-derived β (SC-β) cells are capable of undergoing glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS), insulin secretion per cell remains low compared with islets and cells lack dynamic insulin release. Herein, we report a differentiation strategy focused on modulating transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) signaling, controlling cellular cluster size, and using an enriched serum-free media to generate SC-β cells that express β cell markers and undergo GSIS with first- and second-phase dynamic insulin secretion. Transplantation of these cells into mice greatly improves glucose tolerance. These results reveal that specific time frames for inhibiting and permitting TGF-β signaling are required during SC-β cell differentiation to achieve dynamic function. The capacity of these cells to undergo GSIS with dynamic insulin release makes them a promising cell source for diabetes cellular therapy.
Project description:Transplantation of human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC) differentiated into insulin-producing ? cells is a regenerative medicine approach being investigated for diabetes cell replacement therapy. This report presents a multifaceted transplantation strategy that combines differentiation into stem cell-derived ? (SC-?) cells with 3D printing. By modulating the parameters of a low-cost 3D printer, we created a macroporous device composed of polylactic acid (PLA) that houses SC-? cell clusters within a degradable fibrin gel. Using finite element modeling of cellular oxygen diffusion-consumption and an in vitro culture system that allows for culture of devices at physiological oxygen levels, we identified cluster sizes that avoid severe hypoxia within 3D-printed devices and developed a microwell-based technique for resizing clusters within this range. Upon transplantation into mice, SC-? cell-embedded 3D-printed devices function for 12 weeks, are retrievable, and maintain structural integrity. Here, we demonstrate a novel 3D-printing approach that advances the use of differentiated hPSC for regenerative medicine applications and serves as a platform for future transplantation strategies.
Project description:Diabetes is linked to loss of pancreatic beta-cells. Pluripotent stem cells offer a valuable source of human beta-cells for basic studies of their biology and translational applications. However, the signalling pathways that regulate beta-cell development and functional maturation are not fully understood. Here we report a high content chemical screen, revealing that H1152, a ROCK inhibitor, promotes the robust generation of insulin-expressing cells from multiple hPSC lines. The insulin expressing cells obtained after H1152 treatment show increased expression of mature beta cell markers and improved glucose stimulated insulin secretion. Moreover, the H1152-treated beta-like cells show enhanced glucose stimulated insulin secretion and increased capacity to maintain glucose homeostasis after transplantation. Conditional gene knockdown reveals that inhibition of ROCKII promotes the generation and maturation of glucose-responding cells. This study provides a strategy to promote human beta-cell maturation and identifies an unexpected role for the ROCKII pathway in the development and maturation of beta-like cells.Our incomplete understanding of how pancreatic beta cells form limits the generation of beta-like cells from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSC). Here, the authors identify a ROCKII inhibitor H1152 as increasing insulin secreting cells from hPSCs and improving beta-cell maturation on transplantation in vivo.
Project description:Efforts toward routine islet cell transplantation as a means for reversing type 1 diabetes have been hampered by islet availability as well as allograft rejection. In vitro transdifferentiation of mouse bone marrow (BM)-derived stem (mBMDS) cells into insulin-producing cells could provide an abundant source of autologous cells for this procedure. For this study, we isolated and characterized single cell-derived stem cell lines obtained from mouse BM. In vitro differentiation of these mBMDS cells resulted in populations meeting a number of criteria set forth to define functional insulin-producing cells. Specifically, the mBMDS cells expressed multiple genes related to pancreatic beta-cell development and function (insulin I and II, Glut2, glucose kinase, islet amyloid polypeptide, nestin, pancreatic duodenal homeobox-1 [PDX-1], and Pax6). Insulin and C-peptide production was identified by immunocytochemistry and confirmed by electron microscopy. In vitro studies involving glucose stimulation identified glucose-stimulated insulin release. Finally, these mBMDS cells transplanted into streptozotocin-induced diabetic mice imparted reversal of hyperglycemia and improved metabolic profiles in response to intraperitoneal glucose tolerance testing. These results indicate that mouse BM harbors cells capable of in vitro transdifferentiating into functional insulin-producing cells and support efforts to derive such cells in humans as a means to alleviate limitations surrounding islet cell transplantation.
Project description:Insulin secretion is elaborately modulated in pancreatic ß cells within islets of three-dimensional (3D) structures. Using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) to develop islet-like structures with insulin-producing ß cells for the treatment of diabetes is challenging. Here, we report that pancreatic islet-like clusters derived from hESCs are functionally capable of glucose-responsive insulin secretion as well as therapeutic effects. Pancreatic hormone-expressing endocrine cells (ECs) were differentiated from hESCs using a step-wise protocol. The hESC-derived ECs expressed pancreatic endocrine hormones, such as insulin, somatostatin, and pancreatic polypeptide. Notably, dissociated ECs autonomously aggregated to form islet-like, 3D structures of consistent sizes (100-150??m in diameter). These EC clusters (ECCs) enhanced insulin secretion in response to glucose stimulus and potassium channel inhibition in vitro. Furthermore, ß cell-deficient mice transplanted with ECCs survived for more than 40?d while retaining a normal blood glucose level to some extent. The expression of pancreatic endocrine hormones was observed in tissues transplanted with ECCs. In addition, ECCs could be generated from human induced pluripotent stem cells. These results suggest that hPSC-derived, islet-like clusters may be alternative therapeutic cell sources for treating diabetes.
Project description:Type 1 diabetes mellitus subjects millions to a daily burden of disease management, life threatening hypoglycemia and long-term complications such as retinopathy, nephropathy, heart disease, and stroke. Cell transplantation therapies providing a glucose-regulated supply of insulin have been implemented clinically, but are limited by safety, efficacy and supply considerations. Stem cells promise a plentiful and flexible source of cells for transplantation therapies. Here, we show that cells derived from human embryonic germ (EG) cells express markers of definitive endoderm, pancreatic and beta-cell development, glucose sensing, and production of mature insulin. These cells integrate functions necessary for glucose responsive regulation of preproinsulin mRNA and expression of insulin C-peptide in vitro. Following transplantation into mice, cells become insulin and C-peptide immunoreactive and produce plasma C-peptide in response to glucose. These findings suggest that EG cell derivatives may eventually serve as a source of insulin producing cells for the treatment of diabetes.
Project description:Stem cell-derived ? (SC-?) cells could provide unlimited human ? cells toward a curative diabetes treatment. Differentiation of SC-? cells yields transplantable islets that secrete insulin in response to glucose challenges. Following transplantation into mice, SC-? cell function is comparable to human islets, but the magnitude and consistency of response in vitro are less robust than observed in cadaveric islets. Here, we profile metabolism of SC-? cells and islets to quantify their capacity to sense glucose and identify reduced anaplerotic cycling in the mitochondria as the cause of reduced glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in SC-? cells. This activity can be rescued by challenging SC-? cells with intermediate metabolites from the TCA cycle and late but not early glycolysis, downstream of the enzymes glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase and phosphoglycerate kinase. Bypassing this metabolic bottleneck results in a robust, bi-phasic insulin release in vitro that is identical in magnitude to functionally mature human islets.
Project description:Islet transplantation has proven to be a successful strategy to restore normoglycemia in patients with type 1 diabetes (T1D). However, the dearth of cadaveric islets available for transplantation hampers the widespread application of this treatment option. Although human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells are capable of generating insulin-producing cells in vitro when provided with the appropriate inductive cues, the insulin-expressing cells that develop behave more like immature ?-cells with minimal sensitivity to glucose stimulation. Here, we identify a set of signaling factors expressed in mouse embryonic mesenchyme during the time when foregut and pancreatic progenitors are specified and test their activities during in vitro differentiation of human embryonic stem cells. Several of the identified factors work in concert to expand the pancreatic progenitor pool. Interestingly, transforming growth factor (TGF)-? ligands, most potent in inducing pancreatic progenitors, display strong inhibitory effects on subsequent endocrine cell differentiation. Treatment with TGF-? ligands, followed by the addition of a TGF-? receptor antagonist, dramatically increased the number of insulin-producing cells in vitro, demonstrating the need for dynamic temporal regulation of TGF-? signaling during in vitro differentiation. These studies illustrate the need to precisely mimic the in vivo conditions to fully recapitulate pancreatic lineage specification in vitro.