The year 2013 marks the 25th anniversary of the Automated Method for islet isolation. The dissociation chamber at the core of the Automated Method was developed by Dr. Camillo Ricordi in 1988 to enhance the disassembling of the pancreatic tissue via a combined enzymatic and mechanical digestion while preserving endocrine cell cluster integrity. This method has ever since become the gold standard for human and large animal pancreas processing, contributing to the success and increasing number of clinical trials of islet transplantation worldwide. Herein we offer an attempt to a comprehensive, yet unavoidably incomplete, historical review of the progress in the field of islet cell transplantation to restore beta-cell function in patients with diabetes.
Keywords: Automated method; Diabetes; History; Islet transplantation; Pancreatic islets.