Published online Jan 26, 2019. doi: 10.4252/wjsc.v11.i1.13
Peer-review started: October 19, 2018
First decision: November 15, 2018
Revised: December 26, 2018
Accepted: January 5, 2019
Article in press: January 6, 2019
Published online: January 26, 2019
Currently, there does not exist a strategy that can reduce diabetes and scientists are working towards a cure and innovative approaches by employing stem cell-based therapies. On the other hand, bioprinting technology is a novel therapeutic approach that aims to replace the diseased or lost β-cells, insulin-secreting cells in the pancreas, which can potentially regenerate damaged organs such as the pancreas. Stem cells have the ability to differentiate into various cell lines including insulin‐producing cells. However, there are still barriers that hamper the successful differentiation of stem cells into β-cells. In this review, we focus on the potential applications of stem cell research and bioprinting that may be targeted towards replacing the β-cells in the pancreas and may offer approaches towards treatment of diabetes. This review emphasizes on the applicability of employing both stem cells and other cells in 3D bioprinting to generate substitutes for diseased β-cells and recover lost pancreatic functions. The article then proceeds to discuss the overall research done in the field of stem cell-based bioprinting and provides future directions for improving the same for potential applications in diabetic research.
Core tip: The shortage of strategies that can potentially reduce diabetes has prompted scientists to employ stem-cell based therapies that could help generate pancreatic β- cells that can regenerate damaged pancreas. The present review article discusses the potential applications of stem cell research by incorporating 3D bioprinting technology. The article also elaborates the research that has been previously and provides future directions for enhancing the potential applications in diabetic research.