Why pancreatic islets should be regarded and regulated like organs

CellR4 Repair Replace Regen Reprogram. 2021;9:e3083. doi: 10.32113/cellr4_20213_3083. Epub 2021 Mar 16.

Abstract

There are strong reasons to say that pancreatic islets are organs before they are isolated and that they should be considered to be organs once transplanted. Thus, taking into account how much we have learned about the structure and function of islet micro-organs, it seems highly illogical to on one hand consider autologous islets be regulated as organ transplants and alloislets to be regulated with the very restrictive rules used for cell transplantation. It is particularly problematic that this policy has led to restrictions that have made it next to impossible for transplants of alloislets to be carried out in the US, which is a very sad situation for the country that made so many of the advances that brought islet transplantation to the clinic.

Keywords: Autologous transplantation; Islet transplantation; Pancreatic alpha cells; Pancreatic beta cells; Pancreatic islets.