Biomaterials and Drug Delivery
Professor Garry Duffy
type 1 diabetes; cell encapsulation; foreign body response; fibrosis
The proposed project will develop anti-fibrotic diabetes reversing implants that will reduce the number of islets needed to reverse diabetes by improving their delivery, survival and engraftment. The islets will be housed in a hydrogel that mimics the native extracellular matrix, which will be protected from the immune system by a semi-permeable capsule. A challenge with macro-encapsulated islet implants is the foreign body response that over time can lead to fibrosis, which is detrimental to the function of the encapsulated cells. The Fellow will explore methods for minimising this response while maximising the survival and function of the islets within the hydrogel.