My husband brought this little news event to my attention. To me, the big news isn't the pig-to-human part... though, that does mean a potentially sufficient amount of donor cells for anyone who needs them! But the big thing to me is that it sounds like they've needed no anti-rejection drugs:
"The seaweed coating keeps the bodies immune system from attacking the foreign animal cells."
I mean, the anti-rejection medication is why pancreas transplants aren't more common, right? Why they generally only transplant a pancreas if they are already transplanting another organ (like a kidney) anyway? Because it's a bigger deal to be on anti-rejection drugs (which weaken the immune system) than it is to be a well-controlled diabetic who hasn't developed serious complications?
And I'm guessing (but I do not know) that they also mean the seaweed protects the cells from the auto-immune activity that defines type 1.
I'm not getting my hopes up too much yet, but it's huge that they're about to make this available to the general public in Russia. Even if "this isn't a cure" or if it turns out to not work like they thought (though they had decent success in trials), I'm so excited to see progress in the research and the attempt to cure T1!