Schulze Diabetes Institute

Pioneering superior transplant therapeutics for people burdened with diabetes.

Researchers in the University of Minnesota’s Schulze Diabetes Institute are driven to reverse Type 1 Diabetes. Through pioneering islet transplantation treatments and ongoing research efforts, our goal is to enable people to live diabetes-free lives.


University of Minnesota Achieves Transplant in Monkeys Without Long-term Immune-fighting Drug

UMN researchers with the Department of Surgery and Schulze Diabetes Institute have maintained long-term survival and function of pancreatic islet transplants despite complete discontinuation of all anti-rejection drugs on day 21 after the transplant.

Latest News

Zach Swanson received his Masters of Biological Sciences  through the college of continuing and professional studies at the University of Minnesota in December 2019. His thesis was titled: "Development of a novel quality assessment assay for the characterization of mitochondrial bioenergetic phenotypes in human islet".  Zach has also been promoted to Research Support Manager 1, and serves as the manager of Islet Manufacturing and R&D.

At the International Xenotransplantation Association (IXA) 15th Congress that took place in Munich, Germany, October 10-13, Yoshihide Nanno, MD, PhD, had a poster presentation entitled ”Profiling Natural Serum Antibodies of Nonhuman Primates with a Carbohydrate Antigen Microarray.”

Dr. Joseph Sushil Rao joined SDI in July 2019. He graduated from Medical School in 2017 from St. John’s National Academy of Health Sciences, Bangalore, India. He was part of an exchange program with the University of Minnesota where he rotated as a medical student in the Division of Solid Organ Transplantation under Dr. Raja Kandaswamy in 2016. With a passion towards transplantation, he is currently part of the Abdominal Organ Transplantation team with Dr. Kandaswamy and as a researcher in tolerance studies with SDI as well as islet isolation in Dr. Erik Finger’s lab.


Islets Offer New Life

The SDI is one of only nine places in the world where patients can get life-changing transplants that treat Type 1 Diabetes. Our expertise is second-to-none in this area. In fact, we’ve done more islet transplants than anywhere else. Is this treatment right for you? 

If you have Type 1 Diabetes and would like to be considered for future islet transplant clinical trials, you can submit your information here.


Diabetes is a chronic (lifelong) disease marked by high levels of sugar in the blood. Either the body does not produce enough insulin, or cells do not respond to the insulin produced.


Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas. This occurs when enzymes are activated within the organ and they start to digest the pancreas itself. 

Get Involved

The Schulze Diabetes Institute relies upon the support of many—from large foundations to individuals with a vested interest in finding a cure. The best way to support our work is to get involved!


The University of Minnesota Foundation (UMF) works to advance research, education, care, and outreach at the University of Minnesota through private gifts. Please consider making a donation to these funds:


Meet like-minded people and have fun while raising money and awareness for diabetes research.

Golf Classic “fore” Diabetes Research

The funds raised through this tournament, dinner and silent auction event solely benefit the Schulze Diabetes Institute. This event has raised more than $5 million to support our work. 

Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF) Walk to Cure Diabetes 

Taking place each year at the Mall of America, the JDRF walk is one of the largest fundraiser walks in the Twin Cities area. The Schulze Diabetes Institute is a major recipient of JDRF grants.

Give to the Max Day

The University of Minnesota Foundation participates in an annual Minnesota event called Give to the Max Day—a day each November set aside for Minnesotans to support causes close to their hearts. Designate your gift on this day to help further a cure for diabetes.