Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Stem Cells, Cellular Therapy & Biobanking
Scientific Community
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article

Geron Scientists and Collaborators Demonstrate Activity of Pancreatic Islet-like Cells Derived from Human Embryonic Stem Cells in Diabetes

Published: Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Last Updated: Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Bookmark and Share
Survival of Diabetic Mice Improved After Transplantation of hESC-derived ILCs.

Geron Corporation has announced the publication of data showing the successful engraftment of human embryonic stem cell (hESC)-derived pancreatic islet-like clusters (ILCs) in diabetic mice. After transplantation, the ILCs continued to express important pancreatic islet proteins, responded to high levels of glucose in the blood, and extended the survival of recipient animals.

Pancreatic islet cells normally secrete insulin in response to high levels of glucose in the blood to maintain steady levels. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the insulin secreting islet cells are destroyed. Administering insulin is life-saving but does not truly mimic the body's natural response to blood glucose and can result in serious complications such as diabetic retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy.

"There is a clinical need for pancreatic islet cells for patients with type 1 diabetes. Transplantation of primary islets from cadaveric donors by the Edmonton Protocol has shown success in reducing the need for insulin administration, but cell availability is severely limited," said Thomas B. Okarma, Ph.D., M.D., Geron's president and chief executive officer. "The in vivo characterization of hESC-derived islet-like clusters is an important milestone in developing a treatment for diabetes using our hESC-derived islet cells, GRNIC1."

The research, conducted by Geron scientists and collaborators at the University of Alberta, has been published online in advance of print in Cell Proliferation.

The studies show that ILCs derived from hESCs express the pancreatic hormones insulin, glucagon and C-peptide, as well as prohormone convertase 1/3 and 2, enzymes normally expressed in mature islets. The data also demonstrate that when the ILCs are transplanted under the kidney capsule of streptozotocin-induced diabetic immuno-incompetent mice they are responsive to elevated levels of glucose. Human C-peptide, a byproduct of normal insulin production, was detected in the serum of mice transplanted with ILCs after oral administration of glucose, but not detected in the absence of glucose administration or in control mice transplanted with either human fibroblast cells or undifferentiated hESCs. Survival and health of mice receiving ILCs was significantly improved. Comparison of survival in the study showed that 78.6% of ILC-implanted mice were surviving beyond 50 days post-transplant, compared to only 23.8% of the recipients of human fibroblast cells and no recipients of undifferentiated hESCs. In addition, ILC grafts recovered at least 40 days after transplantation still expressed pancreatic markers as further evidence of continued functionality.

"These data importantly demonstrate that ß-islet like cells obtained from hESCs will survive when transplanted into a diabetic animal and show some functionality of pancreatic islets," said Jane S. Lebkowski, Ph.D., Geron's senior vice president of regenerative medicine. "The next milestone in therapeutic development is to further improve the function of the hESC-derived ILCs and achieve normal glucose regulation in animal models of diabetes."

The differentiation protocol does not require serum or feeder layer cells and therefore allows scalable production of hESC-derived islet-like cells, an important condition for therapeutic development.

Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 5,100+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters

Sign In

Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

Geron Corporation Appoints Karin Eastham to its Board of Directors
Geron Corporation has announced the appointment of Karin Eastham to its board of directors. Ms. Eastham will also serve as chair of the company’s audit committee.
Monday, March 30, 2009
Geron Receives FDA Clearance to Begin World's First Human Clinical Trial of Embryonic Stem Cell-Based Therapy
Geron Corporation announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted clearance of the company’s Investigational New Drug (IND) application for the clinical trial of GRNOPC1 in patients with acute spinal cord injury.
Friday, January 23, 2009
Geron Issues Statement regarding European Patent Office Decision in WARF Patent Appeal
Geron Corporation announced that the Enlarged Board of Appeals of the European Patent Office (EPO) has issued a decision in case G0002/06, which was an appeal by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) against the rejection of claims in WARF’s European Patent Application No. 96903521.1.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Scientific News
Genome Engineering Paves Way For Sickle Cell Cure
Researchers from UC Berkeley have used CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing to fix the mutated gene responsible for sickle cell disease.
Preventing Alzheimer's in Mice
Researchers have prevented the Alzheimer’s development in mice by using a virus delivery system to transport a specific gene into the brain.
Link Between Heart and Blood Cells in Early Development Found
Researchers have identifed a key factor in determining the fate of early undifferentiated cells during development.
Scientists Speed Up Muscle Repair
Researchers discovered genetically modified mice were able to support far more regenerative stem cells, for muscle repair, than previously thought.
3D-Printing in Science: Conference Co-Staged with LABVOLUTION
LABVOLUTION 2017 will have an added highlight of a simultaneous conference, "3D-Printing in Science".
Nanosensors Could Determine Tumours’ Ability to Remodel Tissue
Researchers design nanosensors that can profile tumours, focusing on protease levels.
Insight into Eye Diseases
Scientists recreate zebrafish cell regeneration from retinal stem cells in mice.
1960s Antibiotics Show Promise for TB Therapy
Research suggests antibiotics introduced in 1963 to treat bacterial infections show promise for tuberculosis therapy.
Analysing 10,000 Cells Simultaneously
New techniquethat traps 10,000 cells on a single chip has potential for cancer screening for individuals.
Studies Explore the Science of Cardiovascular Diseases
Two studies highlight how basic science research insights are key to future treatment breakthroughs.
Skyscraper Banner

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
5,100+ scientific videos