Diabetes: regeneration of the pancreas in the zebrafish
How can we improve the treatment and quality of life of diabetic patients? One of the lines of the research studied involves the renewal of the beta cells of the pancreas which are responsible for the production of insulin. A team from GIGA at the University of Liege, led by Isabelle Manfroid and Marianne Voz, has just identified progenitor cells in the zebrafish which will make it possible to regenerate beta cells without the need for grafts or medicine.
"Another therapeutic approach, which we have been actively working on, is to stimulate the regeneration of the patient’s beta cells”, she explains. “To do this, cells which are already present in vivo in the pancreas could be harnessed, these are pancreatic stem cells or progenitor cells capable of regenerating the beta cells. However, the existence of pancreatic stem cells in humans and even in mice (the traditional model used in laboratories) is shrouded in controversy because it is difficult to demonstrate their existence”.