Islet transplantation as a promising treatment for type 1 diabetes has received widespread attention. Oxidative stress plays an essential role in cell injury during islet isolation and transplantation procedures. Antioxidants have been used in various studies to improve islet transplantation procedures. The present study reviews the role of oxidative stress and the benefits of antioxidants in islet transplantation procedures. The bibliographical databases Pubmed and Scopus were searched up to November 2008. All relevant human and animal in-vivo and in-vitro studies, which investigated antioxidants on islets, were included. Almost all the tested antioxidants used in the in-vitro studies enhanced islet viability and insulin secretion. Better control of blood glucose after transplantation was the major outcome of antioxidant therapy in all in-vivo studies. The data also indicated that antioxidants improved islet transplantation procedures. Although there is still insufficient evidence to draw definitive conclusions about the efficacy of individual supplements, the benefits of antioxidants in islet isolation procedures cannot be ignored
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