Human Pancreatic Islet Isolation: Part II: Purification and Culture of Human Islets

J Vis Exp. 2009 May 26;(27):1343. doi: 10.3791/1343.

Abstract

Management of Type 1 diabetes is burdensome, both to the individual and society, costing over 100 billion dollars annually. Despite the widespread use of glucose monitoring and new insulin formulations, many individuals still develop devastating secondary complications. Pancreatic islet transplantation can restore near normal glucose control in diabetic patients, without the risk of serious hypoglycemic episodes that are associated with intensive insulin therapy. Providing sufficient islet mass is important for successful islet transplantation. However, donor characteristics, organ procurement and preservation affect the isolation outcome. At University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) we developed a successful isolation protocol with an improved purification gradient. The program started in January 2004 and more than 300 isolations were performed up to November 2008. The pancreata were sent in cold preservation solutions (UW, University of Wisconsin or HTK, Histidine-Tryptophan Ketoglutarate) to the Cell Isolation Laboratory at UIC for islet isolation. Pancreatic islets were isolated using the UIC method, which is a modified version of the method originally described by Ricordi et al. As described in Part I: Digestion and Collection of Pancreatic Tissue, human pancreas was trimmed, cannulated, perfused, and digested. After collection and at least 30 minutes of incubation in UW solution, the tissue was loaded in the cell separator (COBE 2991, Cobe, Lakewood, CO) for purification. Following purification, islet yield (expressed as islet equivalents, IEQ), tissue volume, and purity was determined according to standard methods. Isolated islets were cultured in CMRL-1066 media (Mediatech, Herndon, VA), supplemented with 1.5% human albumin, 0.1% insulin-transferrin-selenium (ITS), 1 ml of Ciprofloxacin, 5 ml o f 1M HEPES, and 14.5 ml of 7.5% Sodium Bicarbonate in T175 flasks at 37 degrees C overnight culture before islets were transplanted or used for research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Video-Audio Media

MeSH terms

  • Cell Culture Techniques / methods*
  • Humans
  • Islets of Langerhans / cytology*
  • Pancreas / cytology