Despite increasing evidence that autoreactive CD8 T-cells are involved in both the initiation of type 1 diabetes (T1D) and the destruction of beta-cells, direct evidence for their destructive role in-vivo is lacking. To address a destructive role for autoreactive CD8 T-cells in human disease, we assessed the pathogenicity of a CD8 T-cell clone derived from a T1D donor and specific for an HLA-A2-restricted epitope of islet-specific glucose-6-phosphatase catalytic-subunit related protein (IGRP). HLA-A2/IGRP tetramer staining revealed a higher frequency of IGRP-specific CD8 T-cells in the peripheral blood of recent onset human individuals than of healthy donors. IGRP(265-273)-specific CD8 T-cells that were cloned from the peripheral blood of a recent onset T1D individual were shown to secrete IFNγ and Granzyme B after antigen-specific activation and lyse HLA-A2-expressing murine islets in-vitro. Lytic capacity was also demonstrated in-vivo by specific killing of peptide-pulsed target cells. Using the HLA-A2 NOD-scid IL2rγ(null) mouse model, HLA-A2-restricted IGRP-specific CD8 T-cells induced a destructive insulitis. Together, this is the first evidence that human HLA-restricted autoreactive CD8 T-cells target HLA-expressing beta-cells in-vivo, demonstrating the translational value of humanized mice to study mechanisms of disease and therapeutic intervention strategies.