Obtaining sufficient donor islet β-like cells is the key to islet transplantation for type 1 diabetes mellitus. Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMMSCs) are expected to be ideal sources to obtaining islet β-like cells, however the low differentiation rate is an urgent bottleneck that need to be solved. Our group demonstrate that extracellular vesicles (Evs) derived from insulinoma can differentiate BMMSCs into islet β-like cells, and exosomes (Exos), a core component of Evs, had higher differentiation rate than Evs. In addition, we show that CD97 overexpressed Exos had higher differentiation rate than that of CD97 knockdown Exos. Furthermore, we clarify that CD97 promotes differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells into islet β-like cells through MAPK/Smad/Ngn3 pathway. Taken together, we demonstrate that insulinoma Evs, especially the Exos, were able to differentiate BMMSCs into islet β-like cells, and that CD97 plays a crucial role in the differentiation process.

Chao Li (M.D. Ph.D.) is currently fellow of Department of Surgery,Second Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University, School of Medicine. In 2011, Dr. Li finished his bachelor training of clinical medicine at Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology. From 2011 to 2016, Dr. Li received his M.D./Ph.D. education in Zhejiang University, School of Medicine, and undertook a half year visiting scholar training in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. Dr. Li’s research focuses on diabetes mellitus and malignant tumors of digestive system, specialized in the treatment of diabetes mellitus using extracellular vesicles derived from mesenchymal stem cells, as well as the metastatic mechanism of pancreatic cancer.