American journal of transplantation : official journal of the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons

Prevention of nonimmunologic loss of transplanted islets in monkeys.

PMID 24913821


The nonimmunologic loss of islets in the pre-, peri-, and early post-islet transplant periods is profound. To determine the potential role that transplantation of only a marginal mass of functioning beta cells may play in triggering late nonimmunologic graft loss, we studied the effect of treatment with alpha-1-antitrypsin (AAT) in the autologous cynomolgus islet transplant model. A marginal mass of autologous islets, that is islets prepared from 70% to 80% of the pancreas, was transplanted at 1600-4100 IEQ/kg into subtotal pancreatectomized, streptozotocin-treated and insulin-deficient diabetic hosts. In this marginal mass islet transplant model, islet function is insidiously lost over time and diabetes recurs in all untreated monkeys by 180 days posttransplantation. Short-term treatment with AAT, an acute phase reactant, in the peri-transplant period serves to terminate inflammation through effects upon expression of TGFβ, NFκB and AKT and favorably altering expression of cell death and survival pathways, as detected by a system biology approach and histology. These effects enabled functional expansion of the islet mass in transplanted hosts such that graft function improves rather than deteriorating over time.