Congratulations to Dr. Cherie Stabler, UF BME associate professor and associate chair for graduate studies, Kerim M. Gattás-Asfura, UF BME research assistant scientist, and Jaime Giraldo, a Ph.D. student from Dr. Stabler’s laboratory, on their recent paper, ‘Synergistic Effect of Cell Surface PEGylation and Short-Course Immunotherapy on Allogeneic Murine Islet Graft Survival’ that was published in the journal Acta Biomaterialia.
In Type 1 diabetes, the cells that are responsible for secreting insulin in response to glucose (sugar) are selectively destroyed. People with Type 1 diabetes are required to monitor their glucose levels and inject themselves with insulin to survive, but it is difficult to manage glucose in this manner, which results in numerous complications. In Dr. Stabler’s laboratory, they are exploring cellular transplantation as a long-term treatment option for type 1 diabetes. A major challenge in this approach is the recognition of these foreign cells by the immune system. Anti-rejection drugs suppress the immune system to dampen this rejection, but it is not an ideal approach. In this publication. Dr. Stabler’s team explored the capacity of a simply polymer brush coating to hide these cellular transplants from the immune system. This approach demonstrated a significant impact in preventing rejection of these cells, while also demonstrating synergy with anti-rejection therapy. This easy to translate approach could result in the decreased dosage or use of anti-rejection drugs for preventing graft rejection.
Acta Biomaterialia is an international journal that publishes peer-reviewed original research reports, review papers and communications in the broadly defined field of biomaterials science. The emphasis of the journal is on the relationship between biomaterial structure and function at all length scales.
The publication is the result of a collaborations with Antonello Pileggi’s team at the Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami.