Research press release


Nature Communications

Biology: Insulin-producing cells from patients with diabetes function in mice


今回、Douglas Meltonたちは、3人の糖尿病患者の結合組織の細胞を採取し、Meltonたちや他の研究者グループによって確立された方法を用いて、β様細胞に再プログラム化し、正常に機能するβ細胞と機能的活性の比較を行って、こうした皮膚細胞から正常に機能するインスリン産生細胞を生成できるのか、またはそうした細胞が疾患状態の情報を保持しているのかどうかを調べた。その結果、患者由来のβ様細胞が十分に機能しており、培養細胞の場合と3~5匹のマウスからなるグループに移植して数か月にわたって評価を行った場合のいずれでも、グルコースに応答し、インスリンを分泌したことが判明した。


Insulin-producing beta cells produced from the cells of patients suffering from type 1 diabetes are functional in mice, reports a paper published online in Nature Communications. The study finds that, after skin cells from three patients with type 1 diabetes have been reprogrammed into beta-like cells after inducing pluripotency, these beta-like cells maintain their functionality (producing insulin and regulating blood glucose levels) when transplanted into mice. Although the human skin cells are derived from just three patients - whose cells may not reflect the full diversity of the disease - these results may help further our understanding of diabetes.

Douglas Melton and colleagues took cells from the connective tissue of three patients suffering from diabetes and reprogram them into beta-like cells using a method that they and other researchers had previously established. They compared their functional activity to that of normally-functioning beta cells in order to see if the skin cells could produce functional, insulin-secreting cells or if they retained information from the disease state. They found that the patient-derived beta-like cells were fully functional: they responded to glucose and secreted insulin both in cell culture and when transplanted into groups of three to five mice which were assessed over the course of several months.

Although clinical applications are still far away, this work could help in future replacement therapy studies and in the development of screens for new drugs to treat diabetes.

doi: 10.1038/ncomms11463

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