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


Bernhard J. Hering, MD been selected for membership in the University of Minnesota’s Academy for Excellence in Health Research and in Team Science.

This Academy is intended to serve as the highest recognition of excellence in faculty research. Those selected have enhanced the reputation of the University of Minnesota through nationally and internationally recognized, sustained, quality health-related research in their fields.

Melena Bellin, MD, Sarah Jane Schwarzenberg, MD, and Srinath Chinnakotla, MBBS, MCh, were the collaborating members on the Team Science Award.


The Schulze Diabetes Institute is thrilled to announce the promotion of two of our faculty members:

Dr. Christopher Burlak, PhD has been promoted to Professor of Surgery.

Dr. Sabarinathan Ramachandran, PhD has been promoted to Associate Professor of Surgery.

Dr. Hering has given the following presentations:

June 10, 2021 "Updates in Islet Transplantation: Best Immunosuppressive Protocol", ESOT 2021 MILAN, European Society for Organ Transplantation.

May 13, 2021 "Tolerance of islet allo- and xenografts: A new era in beta cell replacement", Online Diabetes Congress 2021, German Diabetes Society.

March 1, 2021 "Islet transplant activity - CITR Data", Online IPITA-Sponsored Pancreas and Islet Cell Transplant Curriculum, International Pancreas and Islet Transplantation Association.

October 28, 2020 “History of Allo-Islet Transplantation at the University of Minnesota”, Transplant Conference, University of Minnesota.

June 16, 2020 "Cross-Network Conundrum 'A': Recurrent Autoimmune Disease after Transplant in Long-Standing Type 1 Diabetes", Cross Type 1 Diabetes Network Leaders Meeting, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. (June 16, 2020).

June 8, 2020 “Cures 2: Exogenous Approach Cell (Beta) Replacement Therapy for T1D" ENDO Online 2020, Endocrine Society.

Drs. Hering, Singh, and Ramachandran all attended the FOCIS (Federation of Clinical Immunology Societies) 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting, Oct 28-31, 2020

Recent Publications

Kumbha, R., Hosny, N., Matson, A., Steinhoff, M., Hering, B. J., & Burlak, C. (2020). Efficient production of GGTA1 knockout porcine embryos using a modified handmade cloning (HMC) method. Research in Veterinary Science, 128, 59-68.  doi: 10.1016/j.rvsc.2019.10.021 Feb 1, 2020


Faulk, C., Mueller, K. R., Cheishvili, D., Colwell, M., Pepin, A. S., Syzf, M., Hering, B. J., & Burlak, C. (2020). Epigenetic biomarkers indicate islet cell death in xenotransplantation. Xenotransplantation, 27(2), e12570. PMID: 31984530 doi: 10.1111/xen.12570 March 1, 2020


Nanno, Y., Sterner, E., Gildersleeve, J. C., Hering, B. J., & Burlak, C. (2020). Profiling natural serum antibodies of non-human primates with a carbohydrate antigen microarray. Xenotransplantation, 27(2), e12567. PMID: 31762117 doi: 10.1111/xen.12567 March 1, 2020


Forneris, N., Levy, H., & Burlak, C. (2020) Human-porcine MHC-I homology allows for antibody cross-reactivity. HLA, 96(2), 197-201. PMID: 32452158 doi: 10.1111/tan.13943.


Lee, F. T., Dangi, A., Shah, S., Burnette, M., Yang, Y. G., Kirk, A. D., Hering, B. J., Miller, S. D., & Luo, X. (2020). Rejection of xenogeneic porcine islets in humanized mice is characterized by graft-infiltrating Th17 cells and activated B cells. American Journal of Transplantation, 20(6), 1538-1550. PMID: 31883299 doi: 10.1111/ajt.15763 June 1, 2020


Trikudanathan, G., Feussom, G., Teigen, L., Munigala, S., Price, K., Dirweesh, A., Wilhelm, J. J., Hering, B. J., Kirchner, V., Chinnakotla, S., Beilman, G., Freeman, M. L., & Bellin, M. D. (2020). Pre-operative Sarcopenia Predicts Low Islet Cell Yield Following Total Pancreatectomy with Islet Autotransplantation for Chronic Pancreatitis. Journal of Gastrointestinal Surgery. PMID: 32557018 doi: 10.1007/s11605-020-04687-3 June 17, 2020


Wilhelm, J. J., Balamurugan, A. N., Bellin, M. D., Hodges, J. S., Diaz, J., Jane Schwarzenberg, S., Swanson, Z. A., Cook, M. E., Downs, E. M., Sutherland DER, Hering, B. J., & Chinnakotla, S. (2020). Progress in individualizing autologous islet isolation techniques for pediatric islet autotransplantation after total pancreatectomy in children for chronic pancreatitis. American journal of transplantation : official journal of the American Society of Transplantation and the American Society of Transplant Surgeons. PMID: 32678932 doi: 10.1111/ajt.16211 July 17, 2020


Markmann, J. F., Rickels, M. R., Eggerman, T. L., Bridges, N. D., Lafontant, D. E., Qidwai, J., Foster, E., Clarke, W. R., Kamoun, M., Alejandro, R., Bellin, M., Chaloner, K., Czarniecki, C. W., Goldstein, J. S., Hering, B. J., Hunsicker, L. G., Kaufman, D. B., Korsgren, O., Larsen, C. P., Luo, X., Naji, A., Oberholzer, J., Posselt, A. M., Ricordi, C., , Senior, P. A., Shapiro, A., Stock, P. G., & Turgeon, N. A. (2020). Phase 3 Trial of Human Islet-after-Kidney Transplantation in Type 1 Diabetes. American Journal of Transplantation. PMID: 32627352 doi: 10.1111/ajt.16174 July 6, 2020


Nanno, Y., Wilhelm, J. J., Heller, D., Schat, R., Freeman, M. L., Trikudanathan, G., Kirchner, V. A., Pruett, T. L., Beilman, G. J., Hering, B. J., & Bellin, M. D. (2020). Combination of pancreas volume and HbA1c level predicts islet yield in patients undergoing total pancreatectomy and islet autotransplantation. Clinical transplantation, 34(8), e14008. PMID: 32530540 doi: 10.1111/ctr.14008 Aug 1, 2020


Hosny, N., Matson, A. W., Kumbha, R., Steinhoff, M., Sushil Rao, J., Bahig, T., Sabek, N., El Wahab, M. A., Hering, B. J., & Burlak, C. (2020). 3'UTR enhances hCD47 cell surface expression, self-signal function, and reduces ER stress in porcine fibroblasts. Xenotransplantation, e12641. PMID: 32892439 doi: 10.1111/xen.12641 Sept 6, 2020


Yu, M., Agarwal, D., Korutla, L., May, C. L., Wang, W., Griffith, N. N., Hering, B. J., Kaestner, K. H., Velazquez, O. C., Markmann, J. F., Vallabhajosyula, P., Liu, C., & Naji, A. (2020). Islet transplantation in the subcutaneous space achieves long-term euglycaemia in preclinical models of type 1 diabetes. Nature metabolism. PMID: 32895576 doi: 10.1038/s42255-020-0269-7 Sept 7, 2020


McEachron, K. R., Yang, Y., Hodges, J. S., Beilman, G. J., Kirchner, V. A., Pruett, T. L., Chinnakotla, S., Hering, B. J., & Bellin, M. D. (2020). Performance of modified Igls criteria to evaluate islet autograft function after total pancreatectomy with islet autotransplantation - a retrospective study. Transplant international. PMID: 33020957 doi: 10.1111/tri.13762 Oct 5, 2020


Nanno, Y., Shajahan, A., Sonon, R. N., Azadi, P., Hering, B. J., & Burlak, C. (2020). High-mannose type N-glycans with core fucosylation and complex-type N-glycans with terminal neuraminic acid residues are unique to porcine islets. PloS one, 15(11), e0241249. PMID: 33170858 doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0241249. Nov 10, 2020


Burlak, C., Taylor, R. T., Wang, Z. Y., & Tector, A. J.(2020)  Human anti-α-fucose antibodies are xenoreactive toward GGTA1/CMAH knockout pigs. Xenotransplantation, e12629. PMID: 32697003 doi: 10.1111/xen.12629.


Klapholz, B., Levy, H., Kumbha, R., Hosny, N., D’Angelo, M, Hering, B, Burlak, C. Highly efficient multiplex genetic engineering of porcine primary fetal fibroblasts. Surgery Open Science, (4) 26-31, April, 2021


Hocum Stone L, Oppler SH, Nugent JL, Gresch S, Hering BJ, Murtaugh MP, Hegstad-Davies RL, Ramachandran S, Graham ML. Serum cytokine profiles in healthy nonhuman primates are blunted by sedation and demonstrate sexual dimorphism as detected by a validated multiplex immunoassay. Sci Rep. 2021 Jan 27;11(1):2340. doi: 10.1038/s41598-021-81953-7. PMID: 33504894; PMCID: PMC7840937.

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.

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.