Intraportal islet autografting can restore near-normal glucose homeostasis in large diabetic animals, but the long-term failure rate of such grafts remains high. To assess the effect of the site of transplantation, we compared the hormonal responses to glucose (500 mg/kg i.v.) of intraportal (IP) and intrasplenic (IS) islet autografts in the cynomolgus monkey previously rendered diabetic by total pancreatectomy. Intravenous glucose tolerance tests (IVGTTs) 6 wk after IP grafting (n = 10) demonstrated nearly normal plasma glucose changes, with qualitatively normal but quantitatively reduced insulin and glucagon responses; only two animals have maintained these responses for >2 yr. IVGTTs 6 wk after IS grafting (n = 4) demonstrated more abnormal plasma glucose changes, with qualitatively normal but weak insulin responses and glucagon levels that did not fall in response to hyperglycemie; only one animal has maintained fasting normoglycemia for >9 mo. These results suggest that IS transplantation confers no benefit over IP transplantation in this model.

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