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Keywords:

  • tissue engineering;
  • biomaterials;
  • cell sheet engineering;
  • hepatocyte;
  • endothelial cell;
  • liver regeneration;
  • islet;
  • diabetes mellitus;
  • insulin;
  • hepatocyte transplantation;
  • islet transplantation

ABSTRACT

Cell-based therapies by using hepatocytes and islets have recently been evaluated as a new therapeutic modality for patients with many forms of liver diseases and insulin-deficient diabetes mellitus. In most of the recently conducted clinical trials, cells have been delivered into liver vasculatures by infusing them through the portal circulation. More recently, tissue engineering–based approaches have spurred significant interests, using hepatocytes and islets in which small but functional new tissues would be created in vivo. Under circumstances in which a higher level of cell engraftment could be obtained, these approaches could provide therapeutic effects. Considerable efforts have been given to sustaining engineered tissues and maintaining their therapeutic effects. This review highlights several strategies that can achieve a higher level of cell survival for creating new functional liver and islet tissues. Anat Rec, 297:73–82. 2014. © 2013 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.