RNA interference for improving the outcome of islet transplantation

Feng Li, Ram I. Mahato

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Islet transplantation has the potential to cure type 1 diabetes. Despite recent therapeutic success, it is still not common because a large number of transplanted islets get damaged by multiple challenges including instant blood mediated inflammatory reaction, hypoxia/reperfusion injury, inflammatory cytokines, and immune rejection. RNA interference (RNAi) is a novel strategy to selectively degrade target mRNA. The use of RNAi technologies to downregulate the expression of harmful genes has the potential to improve the outcome of islet transplantation. The aim of this review is to gain a thorough understanding of biological obstacles to islet transplantation and discuss how to overcome these barriers using different RNAi technologies. This eventually will help improve islet survival and function post transplantation. Chemically synthesized small interferring RNA (siRNA), vector based short hairpin RNA (shRNA), and their critical design elements (such as sequences, promoters, and backbone) are discussed. The application of combinatorial RNAi in islet transplantation is also discussed. Last but not the least, several delivery strategies for enhanced gene silencing are discussed, including chemical modification of siRNA, complex formation, bioconjugation, and viral vectors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)47-68
Number of pages22
JournalAdvanced Drug Delivery Reviews
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Islet transplantation
  • RNA interference
  • ShRNA
  • SiRNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


Dive into the research topics of 'RNA interference for improving the outcome of islet transplantation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this