Plenary Lecture 1

CELL THERAPY OF DIABETES MELLITUS AND ITS COMPLICATIONS: HOW FAR ARE WE?


Bernat Soria


CABIMER, Spain
 

Due to the high prevalence and cost of diabetes in the world (more than 400 million people and more than 600 billion € of annual cost), diabetes has to be considered a Public Health problem. Diabetes describes a situation in which blood sugar is unregulated, is not a disease, but a group of diseases. Type 1 is an autoimmune disease in which pancreatic B-cells disappear, whilst type 2 is a lifestyle caused disease with a progressive decrease in B-cell mass and peripheral insulin resistance. Additionally there are less frequent forms such as monogenic diseases (MODY) or gestational diabetes. Regenerative medicine is a broad concept including not only Cell Therapy, but other strategies to recover tissue homeostasis. Either autologous or allogenic stem cells may be used to treat or alleviate diabetes and their complications, such as diabetic foot.

 

Strategies :

  1. Immunomodulation and blockade of the lymphocytic attack on the B-cell
  2. Transplantation of insulin producing cells derived from pluripotent stem cells and expansion from resident islet cells.
  3. Regeneration from resident progenitors, and
  4. Neovascularization (angiogenesis and vasculogenesis) to avoid amputation and recovery from critical ischaemia of the legs in diabetic and non-diabetic patients

 

We will also discuss other strategies to generate vascular smooth muscle cells, corneal endothelium or the role of GATA-4 in liver fibrosis.

 

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