Vrije Universiteit Brussel


Induction of Beta Cell Regeneration

In normal adult pancreas, islet beta cells renew and expand slowly by mitotic activity. In experimental conditions of severe tissue injury caused by exogenous agents, however, robust regenerative activity is not observed. Nevertheless, it is possible to induce and stimulate beta cell regeneration by pharmacological treatment with growth factors or hormones. This could lead to new forms of therapy to restore an endogenous functional mass of beta cells in diabetes patients.

Our research has already led to the discovery of a combination of agents which induces beta cell regeneration in diabetic mice, namely epidermal growth factor plus gastrin or ciliary neurotrophic factor (CNTF). We are currently unraveling the underlying mechanism.


©2015-2016 • DIFF • Vrije Universiteit Brussel • Faculteit Geneeskunde & Farmacie • Laarbeeklaan 103 • 1090 Jette • Tel.: 02/477.44.57 • lucbo@vub.ac.be