Diabetes is one of the most prevalent, costly, and debilitating diseases in the world. Although traditional insulin therapy has alleviated the short-term effects, long-term complications are ubiquitous and harmful. For these reasons, alternative treatment options are being developed. This review investigates one appealing area: cell replacement using encapsulated islets. Encapsulation materials, encapsulation methods, and cell sources are presented and discussed. In addition, the major factors that currently limit cell viability and functionality are reviewed, and strategies to overcome these limitations are examined. This review is designed to introduce the reader to cell replacement therapy and cell and tissue encapsulation, especially as it applies to diabetes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology