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Human beta cells can be easily induced to replicate, according to study in Diabetes
Date:1/13/2009

lood sugar levels normalized," explained Dr. Fiaschi-Taesch. "When we took out the kidney that contained the insulin-producing cells, the mouse immediately developed diabetes again."

The prospect of being able to study human beta cells and their replication in vivo, meaning in a living animal, could greatly improve diabetes study models, and could lead to techniques to generate new beta cells in patients with diabetes. In the future, it also could allow more effective therapeutic transplants of insulin-producing cells either by expanding the numbers of cells available from a single cadaveric donor or from a gene-enhanced version of the patient's own cells, or by establishing permanent cell lines from existing beta cells or stem cells, Dr. Stewart pointed out.

He added that cell cycle replication molecules might also be targets for drugs that could transiently turn on beta cell replication to increase insulin production.


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Contact: Anita Srikameswaran
SrikamAV@upmc.edu
412-647-3555
University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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