Issue 1 - Volume 1 - July 2021
Subscribe to the Beta-Cell Bulletin

On behalf of the IPITA Education Committee, welcome to the first edition of the Beta-Cell Bulletin!

This quarterly newsletter highlights the latest and most relevant publications in our field, as well as association news, and updates on meetings and educational activities.

In this Issue:

  • We have compiled a list of articles and manuscripts we hope you enjoy.
  • We have launched a new great initiative, the “IPITA Curriculum on Pancreas & Islet Transplantation” 
  • Obituary: Jean-Michel “Max” Dubernard (1941-2021)
  • Reminding our members that the IPITA 2021 Virtual Congress registration opens soon
  • List of new members to Welcome in 2021
Steven Paraskevas
Editor, Beta-Cell Bulletin
IPITA Education Committee

Bulletin Contributors:

Pancreas Section: Jonathan Fridell and Angelika Gruessner

Islet/Beta-cell Section: Christian Shutz, Alice Tomei, and Steven Paraskevas

New IPITA Educational Initiative

On behalf of the International Pancreas and Islet Transplantation Association (IPITA) Council, we would like to share with you an exciting new initiative, the "IPITA Curriculum on Pancreas & Islet Cell Transplantation".
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A main focus of IPITA is to promote training in the field of pancreas and islet cell transplantation and it is our hope that this new initiative will advance this goal.

We developed this curriculum in collaboration with investigators and clinicians from around the world with the purpose of providing the community with a comprehensive educational resourse both for trainees, and seasoned professionals in our field seeking to update their practice.

The curriculum is free for IPITA and TTS members through the member portal on and Those who are not yet members may signup for soley for the curriculum or sign-up and become a member of IPITA at the same time. We have priced the Curriculum to make this as attractive as possible to recruit new members.


Jean-Michel “Max” Dubernard (1941-2021)

Jean Michel Dubernard (Max to his friends) passed away on July 11, 2021. He was on vacation with his wife Camille and some of his grandchildren. His death was sudden and unexpected.
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His exemplary life leaves us to reflect on life in general, and what a surgeon can do for a suffering patient.

He was a pioneer with an innate sense of innovation. Transgression of dogmatic ideas was one on his leading lines of thought. He wanted to push the limits… and to extend the world of the possible.

As a child, he was fascinated by the concept of transplantation, from the first kidney graft on Marius Renard in 1952 in Paris. Dream became reality a few years later with the simultaneous start of transplantation programs in Paris and in Boston. He moved to Boston as a research fellow where he spent 3 years with Dr. Joseph Murray, the transplantation pioneer who was later awarded a Nobel Prize. There, he worked on an islet transplantation project in rodents and familiarized himself with the very first immunosuppression induction treatments. His masters and peers became the pioneers who spread transplantation techniques throughout the world .

Back in Lyon, he joined the burgeoning transplantation program  mentored by Jules Traeger, a nephrologist who was at that time conducting research with Charles Mérieux on anti-lymphocyte globulin. Very early he started an experimental research program on heterografts in primates. A few years later, as diabetic patients with renal insufficiency were increasing in number, he started one of the first pancreas transplant programs in Europe. Considering the initial failure of whole organ transplantation in Minneapolis in 1972, he imagined to tackle the problem with a simple segmental graft, with intraductal injection of Neoprene, that would block exocrine secretions, thus transforming a dual-function organ into a single endocrine gland. He set up a surgical and research team with a young surgeon named Xavier Martin who was 12 years his junior, establishing a collaboration and friendship that would last for more than 43 years. The rather simple preparation technique of the graft was a booster for pancreatic transplantation programs to start again all over the world, in Minneapolis, Munich, Milan, Birmingham and several other institutions. The advent of new powerful immunosuppressive drugs such as Ciclosporin A allowed them to revisit new pancreas transplantation techniques . He organized in Lyon the very first international meeting on pancreas transplantation in 1979, where the the International Pancreas Transplant Registry (IPTR) was created with his good friend David Sutherland. This laid the foundation for founding of the International Pancreas and Islet Transplant Association (IPITA) and the organization of the 3rd Congress of IPITA in Lyon in 1991. The last IPITA meeting was organized in Lyon in 2019 by Xavier Martin, Lionel Badet, Emmanuel Morelon and Thierry Berney under his honorary presidency. He was on the founding board of many otherscientific societies, including ESOT and the International  Microsurgical Society. He was President of many of them.

In parallel, he organized a urologic department that became a leading international group in new technologies, such as shock wave lithotripsy, endoscopy and of prostate cancer treatment with high intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU). At the University of Lyon, he introduced  microsurgery techniques  brought from Sydney by Earl Owen, with whom he would later organize the hand transplantation program.

It may seem that Max Dubernard has led several parallel lives: in the late eighties, he got involved in politics and became Deputy Mayor of Lyon. He was elected for almost 20 years to the Assemblée Nationale (French Congress). This new area of activity didn’t stop him from thinking about an ambitious project : transplantation of composite tissues. His friendship with Earl Owen, a specialist of limb replantation and microsurgery in Sydney, lead him to develop the hand transplantation project. The first case was a patient from New Zealand. Surgery was performed with the help of an international team including Marco Lanzetta and Nadey Hakim. Although unsuccessful due to non-adherence to immunosuppressive treatment, this first experience became the basis for a new program of bilateral hand transplantation. It led to success in 2000 with the first graft on Denis Chatelier, with more than 20 years of success in recovery of function. The multidisciplinary team set up for this project continued as a new means of cooperation between surgeons and neuroscientists, leading to breakthrough discoveries in the field of neuroscience, such as the plasticity of brain connections.

This success of composite tissue transplantation also opened the path to other transplants in the world, such as joints, abdominal wall and larynx among others. He created the International Composite Tissue Transplantation Society with the help of Palmina Petruzzo. Later, in 2005, he had a leading role in the first face transplant that was performed in Amiens by Bernard Devauchelle and Sylvie Testelin. The Lyon group had indeed shown pioneering skills and expertise in the management of composite tissue transplant patients, with a team including nephro-immunologists, pathologists, rehabilitation care, psychiatry and nursing care, and Bernard Devauchelle was therefore happy to leverage this experience and initiate this exemplary collaboration.

During his entire career Max was a team builder, finding the right people, putting them in charge, mentoring them with his extraordinary sense of confidence and endless enthusiasm. He always referred to the “rugby team spirit”, a sport he had practiced in his youth and where he allegedly received his “Max” nickname. He was a mentor and a teacher and was the founder, together with Henri Kreis, of the Hesperis Course, a fantastic lectures cycle, in which new generations of transplant surgeons and physicians were taught by the European leaders in the field.

Max was a visionary and was always looking for some new application in the field of surgery and technology. He was a prolific scientist, and the author of more than 400 scientific papers. He received numerous awards for his monumental achievements, such as the Honorary ESOT Membership Award in 2019, the Lillehei Lecture Award from IPITA in 2103, and the prestigious Medawar Prize of The Transplant Society  in 2008.

Perhaps most importantly, Max had a very deep sense of humanity and loyalty in his relationships and with his friends. He was always keen to maintain his numerous friendships almost everywhere in the world.

- Xavier Martin, Lionel Badet, Emmanuel Morelon, Thierry Berney

IPITA 2021

  • Three days of cutting-edge clinical data and updates on state-of-the-art research
  • A pre-congress COVID-19 workshop on understanding the links between diabetes and transplant
  • A panel of truly global experts and key opinion leaders
  • Innovative presentation formats to maximize engagement
  • Networking opportunities to make important professional connections

Welcome our New Members in 2021

  • Humberto Bohorquez, Ochsner Health, New Orleans, USA
  • Eelco J.P. de Koning,  Leiden University Medical Center, The Netherlands
  • Stephanie George, Rush University Medical Center, Chicago, USA
  • Kedar Ghimire, University of Sydney, Australia
  • Volkert Huurman, Leiden University Medical Center,  The Netherlands
  • Esposito Laure, CHU Rangueil Toulouse, France
  • Paraish Misra, University of Toronto, Canada
  • Pedro Ventura-Aguiar, Hospital Clínic Barcelona, Spain
  • Orianne Villard, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA
  • Muqing Yang, Tenth People's Hospital affiliated to Tongji University, China

Featured Article

IPITA provided advice during concept development and the formation of the writing committee for this review.

Transplant Options for Patients With Diabetes and Advanced Kidney Disease: A Review

Aleksandra Kukla, Pedro Ventura-Aguiar, Matthew Cooper, Eelco J.P. de Koning, David J. Goodman, Paul R. Johnson, Duck J. Han, Didier A. Mandelbrot, Martha Pavlakis, Frantisek Saudek, Marie-Christine Vantyghem, Titus Augustine, Michael R. Rickels,
American Journal of Kidney Diseases, 2021, ISSN 0272-6386,
until August 28. 2021

Pancreas Transplantation

OPTN/SRTR 2019 Annual Data Report: Pancreas
R. Kandaswamy, P. G. Stock, J. Miller, M. A. Skeans
Am J Transplant Volume21, IssueS2 Special Issue: OPTN/SRTR Annual Data Report 2019 February 2021 Pages 138-207
Outcomes after simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation from donation after circulatory death donors: a UK registry analysis
Chris J. Callaghan, Maria Ibrahim, Claire Counter, John Casey, Peter J. Friend, Christopher J.E. Watson, Nikolaos Karydis
Am J Transplant 18 April 2021
Eplet mismatch scores and de novo donor-specific antibody development in simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation
J.M. Ladowski, Haddon Mullins, Margaret Romine, David Kloda, Carlton Young, Vera Hauptfeld-Dolejsek, Julie Houp, Jayme Locke
Human Immunology 82 (2021) 139–146
First-day plasma amylase detects patients at risk of complications after simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation
Akseli Bonsdorff1, Ville Sallinen1, Juulia Räihä, Agneta Ekstrand, Arno Nordin, Marko Lempinen, Ilkka Helanterä
Clinical Transplantation. 2021;35:e14233.
Recipient age and outcome after pancreas transplantation: a retrospective dual-center analysis
Franka Messner, Marjolein Leemkuil, Yifan Yu, Allan B. Massie, Felix J. Krendl, Stan Benjamens, Claudia Bösmüller, Annemarie Weissenbacher, Stefan Schneeberger, Robert A. Pol, Christian Margreiter
Transplant International 2021; 34: 657–668
The Value of Graft Implantation Sequence in Simultaneous Pancreas-Kidney Transplantation on the Outcome and Graft Survival
Hans-Michael Hau, Nora Jahn, Sebastian Rademacher, Elisabeth Sucher, Jonas Babel, Matthias Mehdorn, Andri Lederer, Daniel Seehofer, Uwe Scheuermann and Robert Sucher
J Clin Med, 2021, 10, 1632.
Recipient age and outcomes following simultaneous pancreas-kidney transplantation in the new millennium: Single-center experience and review of the literature
Komal Gurung, Jennifer Alejo, Jeffrey Rogers, Alan C. Farney, Giuseppe Orlando, Colleen Jay, Amber Reeves-Daniel, Alejandra Mena-Gutierrez, Natalia Sakhovskaya, William Doares, Scott Kaczmorski, Michael D. Gautreaux, Robert J. Stratta
Clinical Transplantation. 2021;00:e14302.
Distal allograft pancreatectomy for graft salvage after pancreas transplantation
Daiki Soma, Tejas Nikumbh, Richard S Mangus, Andrew J. Lutz, John A. Powelson, Jonathan A Fridell
Clinical Transplantation. 2021;00:e14307
LAMS for Creation of an Anastomosis Between the Native and Donor Duodenum to Bypass a Proximal Jejunal Obstruction in a Pancreas Transplant Recipient
Jonathan A. Fridell, John A. Powelson, Andrew J. Lutz and Mohammad A. Al-Haddad
Transplantation Direct. 7(3):e665, March 2021.
Impact of Simultaneous Pancreas-kidney Transplantation on Cardiovascular Risk in Patients With Diabetes
Enrique Montagud-Marrahi, Alicia Molina-Andújar, Adriana Pané, Sabina Ruiz, Antonio J. Amor, Enric Esmatjes, Joana Ferrer, Elisenda Banon-Maneus, Evelyn Hermida, Mireia Musquera, Constantino Fondevila, Fritz Diekmann and Pedro Ventura-Aguiar
Transplantation. March 02, 2021
Insulin secretion and action after pancreas transplantation. A retrospective single-center study
K Birkeland Bleskestad, E Nordheim, J Petter Lindahl, K Midtvedt, H Pihlstrom, R Horneland, S Lee, A Asberg, TG Jenssen, KI Birkeland
Scan J Clin Lab Invest. 2021

Islet Transplantation and Beta-cell Science

Phase 3 trial of human islet‐after‐kidney transplantation in type 1 diabetes
Markmann JF, Rickels MR, Eggerman TL, Bridges ND, Lafontant DE, Qidwai J, et al.
Am J Transplant. 2021;21(4):1477–92.
Patients with highly unstable type 1 diabetes eligible for islet transplantation can be managed with a closed‐loop insulin delivery system: A series of N‐of‐1 randomized controlled trials
Benhamou P, Lablanche S, Vambergue A, Doron M, Franc S, Charpentier G.
Diabetes Obes Metabolism. 2021;23(1):186–94.
High Concentrations of Etanercept Reduce Human Islet Function and Integrity
Brandhorst D, Brandhorst H, Acreman S, Abraham A, Johnson PR
Am J Transplant. 2021;21(4):1493–502.
Impact of ischemia time on islet isolation success and posttransplantation outcomes: A retrospective study of 452 pancreas isolations
Wassmer C, Perrier Q, Combescure C, Pernin N, Parnaud G, Cottet‐Dumoulin D, et al.
Am J Transplant. 2021;21(4):1493–502.
Autoreactive T cell profiles are altered following allogeneic islet transplantation with alemtuzumab induction and re‐emerging phenotype is associated with graft function
Sabbah S, Liew A, Brooks AM, Kundu R, Reading JL, Flatt A, et al.
Am J Transplant. 2021;21(3):1027–38.
Chemical combinations potentiate human pluripotent stem cell-derived 3D pancreatic progenitor clusters toward functional beta-cells.
Haisong Liu, Ronghui Li, Hsin-Kai Liao, Chao Wang, Yang Yu, Lei Shi, Jiameng Dan, Alberto Hayek, Llanos Martinez, Estrella Nuñez Delicado, Juan Carlos Izpisua Belmonte
Nature Communications, 2021, 12:3330.
Functional, metabolic and transcriptional maturation of stem cell derived beta cells
Diego Balboa, Tom Barsby, Väinö Lithovius et al.
bioRxiv, 2021, doi: 10.1101/2021.03.31.437748
GP2-enriched pancreatic progenitors give rise to functional beta cells in vivo and eliminate the risk of teratoma formation
Yasaman Aghazadeh, Farida Sarangi, Frankie Poon, Blessing Nkennor, Emily C. McGaugh, Sara S. Nunes, M. Cristina Nostro
bioRxiv, 2021, doi: 10.1101/2021.03.31.437748
miR-212/132-Enriched extracellular vesicles promote differentiation of induced pluripotent stem cells into pancreatic beta cells
Chunyu Bai, Qiwei Ren, Haifeng Liu, Xiangchen Li, Weijun Guan and Yuhua Gao
Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology, 2021, 5(9),


Pancreas transplantation would be easy if the recipients were not diabetic: A practical guide to post-operative management of diabetic complications in pancreas transplant recipients
Adam Cerise, Jeanne M. Chen, John A. Powelson, Andrew J. Lutz, Jonathan A. Fridell
Clinical Transplantation. 2021;00:e14270
Pancreas transplant versus islet transplant versus insulin pump therapy: in which patients and when?
Riccardo Tamburrini and Jon S. Odorico
Curr Opin Organ Transplant 2021, 26:176–183
Frailty in Pancreas Transplantation
Sandesh Parajuli, Fahad Aziz, Neetika Garg, Rebecca E. Wallschlaeger, Heather M. Lorden, Talal Al-Qaoud, Didier A. Mandelbrot, Jon S Odorico
Transplantation. 2021 Jan 8.
Radiological initial treatment of vascular catastrophes in pancreas transplantation: Review of current literature
David Leiberman, Videha Sharma, Vishwanath Siddagangaiah, Edward Lake, David van Dellen, Raman Dhanda, Titus Augustine, Dare Seriki, Rajinder Singh
Transplantation Reviews 35 (2021) 100624
Working towards an ERAS Protocol for Pancreatic Transplantation: A Narrative Review
Madhivanan Elango and Vassilios Papalois
J. Clin. Med. 2021, 10, 1418.
Protecting islet functional viability using mesenchymal stromal cells
Hubber EL, Rackham CL, Jones PM.
Stem Cell Transl Med. 2021;10(5):674–80.
The promise of stem cell-derived islet replacement therapy
Melton D
Diabetologia. 2021;64(5):1030–6.
The Future of Clinical Islet Transplantation in the United States
Knoll MF, Knoll CA, Bottino R, Trucco M, Bertera S.
OBM Transplant. 2021;5(1).
Designing biomaterials for the modulation of allogeneic and autoimmune responses to cellular implants in Type 1 Diabetes
Magdalena M Samojlik, Cherie L Stabler
Acta Biomaterialia, 2021,

Editorials and Commentary

Islet or pancreas after kidney transplantation: Is the whole still greater than some of its parts?
Jonathan A. Fridell, Robert J Stratta
Am J Transplant. 2021;21:1363–1364
Pancreas Transplantation Alone: Radical or Rationale?
Robert J. Stratta, Jonathan A. Fridell
Transplantation: January 19, 2021
The demise of islet allotransplantation in the United States: A call for an urgent regulatory update
Witkowski P, Philipson LH, Kaufman DB, Ratner LE, Abouljoud MS, Bellin MD, et al.
Am J Transplant. 2021;21(4):1365–75.
Regulatory updates are needed to prevent the commercialization of islet transplantation in the United States
Witkowski P, Barth RN, Japour A, Javitt G, Pyda JS, Bachul PJ, et al.
Am J Transplant. 2021



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