Dr. Kent receives Pioneer Award from the Network for Pancreatic Organ Donors with Diabetes

Sally C. Kent, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Medicine in the Diabetes Division, Diabetes Center of Excellence at UMass Medical School, was recognized by the Network for Pancreatic Organ Donors with Diabetes (nPOD) with a Pioneer Award for her “continued dedication to create a world free of Type 1 Diabetes.”  Jenny Aurielle B. Babon, Ph.D., a Post Doctoral Associate in the Kent Lab, gave a poster and oral presentation at the nPOD Annual Scientific Meeting about their findings looking at the white blood cells from within the islets of a recent-onset T1D donor.  The donor had been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes just five months before he passed away, at the age of 23.  FULL STORY

Kent Lab researchers isolate immune cells from the islets of donors with type 1 diabetes

In a highly collaborative effort, scientists at UMass Medical School have isolated and characterized a large bank of live islet-infiltrating T cells directly from the islets of tissue donors with type 1 diabetes. The findings, published in Nature Medicine, have direct implications for the design of therapies and preventative strategies for those with type 1 diabetes and those at risk for developing it. 

Using live islets from nine type 1 diabetic donors, which is the largest cohort studied thus far, Sally C. Kent, Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine in the Diabetes Center of Excellence, and Jenny Aurielle B. Babon, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow, sorted live lymphocytes from the islets by fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS), and also used an improved tissue culture method they developed to grow lymphocytes from the islets. Overall, Dr. Kent derived 236 T cell lines from the islets and analyzed the function of 50 lines, discovering the specific reactivities of 18 lines.  FULL STORY