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Biomedical Sciences - Pharmacology & Toxicology | Drug Delivery and Translational Research (Press)

Drug Delivery and Translational Research

Drug Delivery and Translational Research

An Official Journal of the Controlled Release Society

Editor-in-Chief: Vinod Labhasetwar

ISSN: 2190-393X (print version)
ISSN: 2190-3948 (electronic version)

Journal no. 13346

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New York | Heidelberg, 26 March 2013

PEG-MAL hydrogels serve as pancreatic islet transplantation vehicles

Congratulations to the 2015 DDTR Outstanding Research Paper Award winners Edward A. Phelps, Kellie L. Templeman, Peter M. Thulé, Andrés J. García for their work on Engineered VEGF-releasing PEG-MAL hydrogel for pancreatic islet vascularization.

Islet cell transplantation therapy may aid in treatment of type 1 diabetes (T1DM)

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Successful transplantation of pancreatic islets can provide T1DM patients with a self-regulating insulin source, instead of relying on exogenous insulin injections. However, multiple complications arise from islet infusions such as: instant blood-mediated inflammatory reaction, toxic responses to immunosuppressive drugs, and inadequate vascularization following transplantation. In an effort to reduce the number of issues with transplantation therapy, this study by Edward Phelps (et al.) tests the effects of grafting pancreatic islets on the surface of tissue with a bioadhesive hydrogel where the transplanted cells did not contact the blood stream directly; this procedure works in contrast to the current clinical standard which involves infusing donor islets into the recipient’s hepatic portal vein.
The biomaterial delivery strategy in this study aimed to accelerate post-transplant islet engraftment to reduce the required transplant cell mass and conceivably expand islet transplantation as an available treatment for T1DM.
PEG–MAL hydrogel enabled extended in vivo release of VEGF. Isolated rat islets encapsulated in PEG–MAL hydrogels remained viable in culture and secreted insulin. Islets encapsulated in PEG–MAL matrix and transplanted to the small bowel mesentery of healthy rats grafted to the host tissue and revascularized by 4 weeks. Addition of VEGF release to the PEG–MAL matrix greatly augmented the vascularization response. These results establish PEG–MAL engineered matrices as a vascular inductive cell delivery vehicle and warrant their further investigation as islet transplantation vehicles in diabetic animal models.
From these findings, the study concludes: “In the future, PEG-MAL could be used to investigate incorporation of different bioadhesive ligands that are tuned to support islet activities and optimize insulin secretion.”

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    The journal provides a unique forum for scientific publication of high-quality research that is exclusively focused on translational aspects of drug delivery. Rationally developed, effective delivery systems can potentially affect clinical outcome in different disease conditions.

    Research focused on the following areas of translational drug delivery research will be considered for publication in the journal.

      • Designing and developing novel drug delivery systems, with a focus on their application to disease conditions;
      • Preclinical and clinical data related to drug delivery systems;
      • Drug distribution, pharmacokinetics, clearance, with drug delivery systems as compared to traditional dosing to demonstrate beneficial outcomes
      • Short-term and long-term biocompatibility of drug delivery systems, host response;
      • Biomaterials with growth factors for stem-cell differentiation in regenerative medicine and tissue engineering;
      • Image-guided drug therapy,
      • Nanomedicine;
      • Devices for drug delivery and drug/device combination products.

    In addition to original full-length papers, communications, and reviews, the journal includes editorials, reports of future meetings, research highlights, and announcements pertaining to the activities of the Controlled Release Society. 

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