The role of zinc in solutions used for cold preservation of pancreatic islets.
Advances in the field of organ transplantation have been made possible by progress in cold preservation as well as advances in immunosuppression, postoperative surgical care, and refinement of surgical techniques. The optimal solution for cold storage of pancreatic islets has not been defined, although recent studies have suggested that University of Wisconsin (UW) solution or derivatives may be significant advances. Zinc has a central role in the storage, synthesis, and secretion of insulin and is taken up preferentially by isolated islets to levels 30-fold higher than those of extracellular zinc. Since the currently used cold storage solutions do not contain zinc, we have investigated the effect of adding zinc to Hanks and UW solution and assessed the viability status of the islets at 0 h and at 1, 3, and 6 days. Islets of standard diameter were suspended in four solutions: Hanks solution, Hanks +20 microM zinc, UW solution, and UW +20 microM zinc. Viability was assessed by supravital staining, and each islet was scored at 0 h and at 1, 3, and 6 days. The results showed that UW solution was superior to Hanks solution for the preservation of pancreatic islets up to 6 days, but the addition of zinc was not beneficial. Despite the integral role of zinc in islet metabolism, we were unable to find a beneficial role for zinc in cold storage solutions for the purposes of islet preservation.
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- DOI : http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/00006676-199605000-00003
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