Gene- and cell-based therapeutics for type I diabetes mellitus

Gene Ther. 2003 May;10(10):875-89. doi: 10.1038/


Type 1 diabetes mellitus, an autoimmune disorder is an attractive candidate for gene and cell-based therapy. From the use of gene-engineered immune cells to induce hyporesponsiveness to autoantigens to islet and beta cell surrogate transplants expressing immunoregulatory genes to provide a local pocket of immune privilege, these strategies have demonstrated proof of concept to the point where translational studies can be initiated. Nonetheless, along with the proof of concept, a number of important issues have been raised by the choice of vector and expression system as well as the point of intervention; prophylactic or therapeutic. An assessment of the current state of the science and potential leads to the conclusion that some strategies are ready for safety trials while others require varying degrees of technical and conceptual refinement.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / immunology
  • Antigen-Presenting Cells / transplantation
  • Autoimmunity
  • Bone Marrow Transplantation
  • Chemokines / genetics
  • Chemokines / immunology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / immunology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / prevention & control
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / therapy*
  • Genetic Therapy / methods*
  • Genetic Vectors / administration & dosage
  • Genetic Vectors / immunology
  • Humans
  • Islets of Langerhans Transplantation* / immunology
  • Mice
  • Models, Animal
  • Proinsulin / genetics
  • Stem Cell Transplantation
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • Chemokines
  • Proinsulin