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October 29, 2001

Research: Cure

Question from Volos, Greece:

Is pancreas transplantation possible for a four year old with type 1 diabetes? Worldwide, where are the centers?


Pancreas as well as islet cell transplants are currently performed only with kidney transplantation in adults with type�1 diabetes who have end-stage kidney failure. This because of the chronic need for immunosuppressive therapy that makes this procedure not recommended in children and for monitoring rejection.

Current research efforts on donor islet cells or stem cells are aimed to possibly anticipate islet transplantation even soon after the initial diagnosis without the need for immunosuppressive agents to cure diabetes at a much earlier stage.