Islet transplantation holds vast potential as a treatment for type 1 diabetes mellitus and provides recipients with short term insulin independence. A major limitation of this treatment is the lack of donor beta (β) cells available for transplantation. Significant progress has been made with stem cell differentiation protocols; current methods have generated cell populations which possess a functioning β cell phenotype. However, these cells are not suitable for clinical transplantation. Two dimensional cell culture systems do not accurately mimic the complexity of the in vivo pancreatic environment, reducing the effectiveness of current β-cell differentiation protocols. The paradigm shift into three dimensional tissue culture provides an attractive area of investigation, and the use of three dimensional culture methods has improved growth in a variety of cell types ex vivo. The mass culture of β cell analogues on a 3D biomimetic environment is now necessary, and may offer a new platform on which an alternative source of transplantable cell populations can be differentiated and cultured successfully.
This thesis aims to develop and condition BioVyon™, a high density polyethylene (HDPE) based biomaterial, for use as a mass β cell cultivation system.
|Date of Award||Sep 2013|