Innovative Coatings to Improve Treatment of Type I Diabetes


Coatings that protect islet cells during transplantation for the treatment of Type I diabetes.

Key Benefits

  • Ability to control permeability characteristics of shape conforming barrier coating.
  • Application to genetically engineered cells, neurons, cardiac myoblasts, myocardial cells, chondrocytes, dopamine secreting cells, or other cell types intended for cell therapy.

Technical Summary

A major obstacle in islet cell transplantation to treat insulin insufficiency in Type 1 diabetics is a high rate of primary nonfunction and early islet destruction after intraportal islet infusion. Dr. Chaikof and colleagues have developed compositions and methods to protect islet cells against destruction by generating an encapsulation barrier composed of multiple layers directly onto the surface of the cells. Advantages of using a conformal coating include reduced cell diameter leading to a decreased risk of thrombosis upon injection into the portal vein, more efficient exchange of oxygen and nutrients, and improved immunoisolation achieved by structurally mimicking the capacity of the cell membrane to limit non-specific cell-cell interactions and control interfacial transport processes. Immunomodulatory proteins including anti-inflammatory and/or anti-coagulant agents can be incorporated into the conformal cell barrier to further reduce the host immune response and increase the biocompatibility of the cells, ultimately reducing the number of islet cells needed per transplant patient and limiting the need for successive islet infusions.

Developmental Stage

The methods of coating islet cells for transplantation have been reduced to practice.

Patent Information

Tech ID: 04057
Published: 2/24/2009