Pig-tissue transplant to cure diabetes?

A recent article says researchers at the Mayo Clinic are ready to propose transplanting living pig tissue into humans.

After decades of research and debate about the ethics and safety of putting living animal tissue into people, the first of such clinical research trials are within sight, according to researchers.

The pigs, like the one at left — raised on sterilized food and surroundings — will be used to provide insulin-producing cells for people who have diabetes. Researchers say diabetics can then produce as much insulin as they need.

What do you think of using pig-tissue in humans? Do you ask yourself “What’s next?”

3 comments Add your comment


February 10th, 2009
12:30 pm

Prior to living with a diabetic spouse I would’ve questioned this proposal. After living the cycle of monitoring, testing, watching, testing, waiting, testing. Watching spikes and valleys even on days/weeks where you’ve done everything ‘right’. Where do we sign up?

Randy Terrell

February 10th, 2009
3:16 pm

I am diabetic and would love to stop the needles, but there is this fear that I might have the sudden urge to go out and root around the yard, or invade the trash can. Seriously, it is a bit disquieting and may not work for those like me who are severely insulin resistant.


February 19th, 2009
5:00 pm

As a type I diabetic of 24 years… I am all for it!!! If this worked, it could potentially save thousands of lives. I was allergic to pork insulin (way back in the day – I am telling my age here!) so I doubt this option would work for me, though. Anyone want to donate a pancreas???