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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 150739, 7 pages
Research Article

Simulated Microgravity Combined with Polyglycolic Acid Scaffold Culture Conditions Improves the Function of Pancreatic Islets

1Department of General Surgery, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Beijing 100730, China
2The Key Laboratory of Cell Transplantation of Ministry of Health and Department of General Surgery, The First Affiliated Hospital of Harbin Medical University, No. 23 Youzheng Street, Nangang District, Harbin, Heilongjiang, China
3General Surgery, Heilongjiang Provincial Hospital, Nangang Branch, Harbin 150001, China

Received 28 February 2013; Revised 1 June 2013; Accepted 16 June 2013

Academic Editor: Manoor Prakash Hande

Copyright © 2013 Yimin Song et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The in vitro culture of pancreatic islets reduces their immunogenicity and prolongs their availability for transplantation. Both simulated microgravity (sMG) and a polyglycolic acid scaffold (PGA) are believed to confer advantages to cell culture. Here, we evaluated the effects of sMG combined with a PGA on the viability, insulin-producing activity and morphological alterations of pancreatic islets. Under PGA-sMG conditions, the purity of the islets was ≥85%, and the islets had a higher survival rate and an increased ability to secrete insulin compared with islets cultured alone in the static, sMG, or PGA conditions. In addition, morphological analysis under scanning electron microscopy (SEM) revealed that the PGA-sMG treatment preserved the integral structure of the islets and facilitated islet adhesion to the scaffolds. These results suggest that PGA-sMG coculture has the potential to improve the viability and function of islets in vitro and provides a promising method for islet transplantation.