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Type 1 Diabetes Breakthrough 2017

Breakthroughs For Diabetes Treatments

Breakthroughs For Diabetes Treatments

Reading Time: 9 minutes. >> Summary: Recently pharmaceutical firms have released new diabetes treatments, including one in the past week. Moreover, a promising new therapy that attacks the root cause of type 2 diabetes is in the development pipeline. [This article first appeared on the LongevityFacts.com website. Author: Brady Hartman. ] The CDC recently shocked the public when they reported that 40% of Americans walking around today would develop type 2 diabetes. Many people develop type 2 diabetes as they age because their body’s response to insulin – the hormone that controls sugar levels – gets weaker. Fortunately, scientists have discovered new treatments for the disease and have more in the pipeline. One such drug, ertugliflozin (brand name Steglatro) was released less than a week ago. Moreover, researchers at UCSD are developing a promising new therapy that attacks type 2 diabetes at its cellular roots. Furthermore, doctors have developed a medication maintenance program, which can help prevent type 2 diabetics from health-robbing complications such as blindness, heart and kidney disease, and peripheral vascular disease. There is also hope for type 1 diabetics, as scientists are working on improved insulin delivery devices, replacing damaged pancreases with stem cell-derived islet cells and the novel ‘pancreas in a box‘ that may restore normal insulin regulation. Type 2 Diabetes Epidemic Diabetes has been a documented human disorder for millennia, but only in recent decades has it developed into an epidemic. Mentions of the condition in ancient medical texts are rare. The primary drivers of the worldwide epidemic are the increasing age of the population, and the obesity epidemic, fed by the growing global adoption of the Western diet. Obesity – the mo Continue reading >>

Gore Joins Viacyte’s Quest For A Functional Type 1 Diabetes Cure

Gore Joins Viacyte’s Quest For A Functional Type 1 Diabetes Cure

A cure for type 1 diabetes has been “just around the corner” for decades now — or so patients have been told. But the moonshot mission has been rough. ViaCyte knows this well after years 18 years of R&D. With every step of progress, a new mountain of challenges looms. The company puts its head down and troubleshoots through, with backing from private investors, pharma partners, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF). On Wednesday, the San Diego, California-based company announced a new partner; W. L. Gore & Associates, the multi-billion dollar manufacturer of medical and non-medical fabrics and devices, including the iconic GORE-TEX. If Gore can contribute some materials expertise, one more problem could get solved. The partnership centers around ViaCyte’s flagship islet replacement therapy. Type 1 diabetes (aka juvenile diabetes) is an autoimmune disease. It accounts for around 5 percent of all diabetes cases. Some 95 percent are caused by so-called adult-onset diabetes, which is a longer-term metabolic disorder. While genetic and environmental factors are believed to play a role, the ultimate trigger for type 1 diabetes is not known. At some point, the immune system incorrectly recognizes beta cells in the pancreas as foreign or threatening. It begins systematically destroying them and with that, the ability of the body to produce insulin. Insulin is the key that allows glucose to enter cells. Without insulin, glucose builds up in the bloodstream while cells are effectively being starved. For decades, patients have replaced the missing insulin with a synthetic version. Yet dosing is problematic. Too little insulin and the blood glucose levels rise; too much and the patient becomes hypoglycemic Continue reading >>

Stem Cell Research Breakthrough In Search For Type 1 Diabetes Cure

Stem Cell Research Breakthrough In Search For Type 1 Diabetes Cure

Researchers at Harvard University in the USA have developed a method for producing new cells that could make for a giant leap in the search for a cure for type 1 diabetes. By using human embryonic stem cells as a starting point Harvard stem cell researchers have found a way to produce, in the kind of massive quantities needed for cell transplantation and pharmaceutical purposes, human insulin-producing beta cells equivalent in most every way to normally functioning beta cells (cells in the pancreas responsible for storing and releasing insulin. Human stem cell-derived beta cells that have formed islet-like clusters in a mouse. The cells were transplanted to the kidney capsule. This photo was taken two weeks later. The beta cells are making insulin, curing the diabetes in the mouse. It is estimated that around 400,000 people in Britain have type 1 diabetes, with treatment costing the NHS £1 billion annually. The research, published in medical journal Cell, was led by Harvard’s Xander University’s Professor Doug Melton, who said he hopes to have human transplantation trials using the cells under way within a few years. Twenty-three years ago, when his infant son Sam was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, Dr Melton dedicated his career to finding a cure for the condition. His daughter Emma also has type 1 diabetes. Doug Melton, Harvard’s Xander University Professor, and his team have announced that they have made a tremendous gain on the type 1 diabetes front. Dr Melton said: “We are now just one preclinical step away from the finish line. You never know for sure that something like this is going to work until you’ve tested it numerous ways. “We’ve given these cells three separate challenges with glucose in mice, and they’ve responded appropriately; that was Continue reading >>

Under-skin Transplants Show Promise For Type 1 Diabetes

Under-skin Transplants Show Promise For Type 1 Diabetes

In theory, transplanting insulin-producing cells into the body should work as a treatment for type 1 diabetes. However, in practice, researchers face many challenges, especially in finding a non-hostile environment for the cells. Now, a new study describes a tissue engineering approach that may create a suitable environment under the skin. In the journal Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers from the Institute of Biomaterials & Biomedical Engineering (IBBME) at the University of Toronto in Canada describe how they developed and tested their subcutaneous transplant method in a mouse model of type 1 diabetes. A significant feature of the study is that the transplant method uses tissue engineering to generate blood vessels that integrate with the host's blood supply. Insulin-producing cells are very sensitive to lack of oxygen, and inadequate blood supply is a problem that has dogged previous attempts to transplant them. Type 1 diabetes destroys islet cells Diabetes is a chronic disease that develops when the body cannot stop blood sugar or glucose getting too high. If untreated, high blood sugar, or hyperglycemia, damages many parts of the body, including the heart, kidneys, eyes, nerves, and blood vessels. Insulin - a hormone that is produced in the pancreas - is the body's main regulator of blood sugar. It helps cells to take in sugar and use it for energy. In people with type 1 diabetes, their immune system destroys the islet cells in their pancreas that produce insulin. In type 2 diabetes, the body produces insulin but cannot use it effectively. There are approximately 30.3 million people living with diabetes in the United States. Type 1 diabetes, which accounts for around 5 percent of diabetes, is most often diagnosed in childhood, or during the Continue reading >>

Breakthrough Stem Cell Technology In Type 1 Diabetes

Breakthrough Stem Cell Technology In Type 1 Diabetes

A regenerative therapy company, known as Viacyte, just announced that a few patients have successfully been implanted with a pouch of stem cells they manufacture. The technology is called the PEC-Direct and consists in replacing lost stem cells in patients with type 1 diabetes with new fully functional ones to reconstitute their stock. It may seem like a straightforward procedure and a possible cure, but the process involves manipulating - though with immunosuppressive drugs - the immune system of these patients and there is always the risk of rejection. The trial took place at the University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta, and UC san Diego School of Medicine's Atman Clinical Trials Research Institute. The scientists trialled and assessed PEC-Direct both for safety and efficacy there and, in the coming months, other centres like the University of Minnesota will do the same. The name of the game is to collect as much data as possible to understand and document all possible outcomes of using this method to grow or regrow the stem cell population. The stem cells used are what's called Human Embryonic Stem Cells (hESC) found in early placental development, not to be confused with placenta-derived stem cells (p-SCs). The objective with this technology is that these hESC eventually differentiate into stem cell-derived pancreatic PEC-01™ cells and new pancreatic tissue. The whole process can take up to 15 days. The first cohort of patients who tested it for the first time received the precious stem cells packaged into immunoprotective durable devices, called sentinels, to facilitate their vascularisation and measure their viability. These can be easily removed at any moment to gather insights as to what stage in their development are the stem cells at, the latest p Continue reading >>

Harvard Biologist Retracts Groundbreaking Diabetes 'breakthrough'

Harvard Biologist Retracts Groundbreaking Diabetes 'breakthrough'

A Harvard research team led by biologist Douglas Melton has retracted a promising research paper following multiple failed attempts to reproduce the original findings. In 2013, researchers from the Harvard Stem Cell Institute discovered that a hormone found in the liver spurred the production of insulin-producing cells in mice. It was lauded as groundbreaking work—one that hinted at the possibility of restoring a person’s ability to produce insulin using their own cells, finally freeing diabetics from having to take regular injections. At the time, it was thought that human transplantation trials were only a few years away, and that a functional cure to Type 1 diabetes had essentially been found. As reported at Retraction Watch, Melton and his colleagues have decided to pull the paper from the journal Cell following multiple failed attempts—both by the Harvard Stem Cell Institute scientists and others—to reproduce the original findings. In 2013, the researchers showed that a hormone produced in the liver, dubbed betatrophin, had a positive effect on insulin production. This effect has not been reliably replicated since. “We have subsequently repeated a series of blinded experiments...and have now determined conclusively that our conclusion...is wrong and cannot be supported,” write the authors in their retraction statement. “Therefore, the most appropriate course of action is to retract the paper. We regret and apologize for this mistake.” The retraction comes on the heels of numerous articles and independent studies casting doubt on the original findings, prompting requests for a retraction as early as 2014. But Melton refused to give up, running experiments on greater quantities of mice and recruiting researchers from other labs to run blinded studies. Continue reading >>

2016, The Year Of Promise For People With Diabetes

2016, The Year Of Promise For People With Diabetes

Working toward a better life – and a cure – for any disease is a practice in patience. We all start out hoping for some “Lorenzo’s Oil” type of situation: we push, we prod, we search and then bam we find our miraculous solution. But in reality, it’s usually quite different. I’ve discovered that in my going-on-20-years of advocating for better treatments and a cure for diabetes for my daughter and for all. Back in 1997, when I first came involved with JDRF and dipped my toes into this “take action” thing, I imagined that by now we’d be done. I pictured storming Capitol Hill, doing a few walks and then finding out it was a wrap. It has not been that way. Instead, I’ve learned that progress is slow and not always steady. It reminds me of skiing runs in the San Juan Mountains, where everything is not always simply a ride up and run down, and instead you hit steeps that give you amazing speed and then rolls that slow you down and challenge you a bit. You’re still on your way to your destination, but it takes some extra effort and management at times to get there. Sometimes, in diabetes cure advocacy, it can feel like all you do is push along. And then there are years like 2016. I want to say that in all my years of fighting for this dream of making life better for people with diabetes, 2016 has been the most exciting, invigorating and encouraging of all. It was back in 2014 that Dr. Doug Melton and his lab at Harvard University announced they had developed a method to replicate insulin-producing beta cells. Melton, in a conversation with reporters, talked, too, about the other piece of the puzzle that might enable these cells to survive Type 1 diabetes’ autoimmune attack: encapsulation. Melton’s lab teamed up with a group of scientists at MIT’s Continue reading >>

Vaccine Against Type 1 Diabetes 'shows Promise'

Vaccine Against Type 1 Diabetes 'shows Promise'

News of a successful trial of a vaccine for type 1 diabetes has been covered by BBC News, who reported that, “It may be possible to reverse type 1 diabetes by training a patient’s own immune system to stop attacking their body.” Type 1 diabetes is a condition where the body’s immune system destroys the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. This means people with the condition require lifelong insulin treatment. It’s possible to block the effects of the immune system by using immunosuppressants, but this would make people more vulnerable to infections. An ideal type 1 diabetes treatment would block the immune cells attacking the pancreas while leaving the rest of the immune system untouched. New research suggests that this could be possible. A trial of a new vaccine compared its effects against placebo in just 80 people. The vaccine improved the function of the insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas, but its effects seemed temporary as beta cell functioning declined soon after the regular vaccine injections were stopped. This suggests that regular vaccine injections might be required for it to work long-term, but this was not tested directly. There are thought to be many different substances that are recognised by, and possibly trigger, immune cells to attack the beta cells of the pancreas. This vaccine is quite specific in preventing just one such pathway. This means the vaccine may lead to an improvement in symptoms, but not a complete cure for the condition. Nonetheless, these are positive results and are likely to spur on larger and longer term studies. If all goes well, it could provide the basis for a new treatment approach for type 1 diabetes. Where did the story come from? The study was carried out by researchers from Europe, the US and Au Continue reading >>

City Of Hope Sets New Goal For Type 1 Diabetes Cure

City Of Hope Sets New Goal For Type 1 Diabetes Cure

DUARTE, Calif., Jan. 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- A cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) in six years is the new goal of City of Hope's Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute, fueled by a $50 million funding program led by the Wanek family. City of Hope, which has a long and groundbreaking history in diabetes, was the first to engineer synthetic human insulin by Arthur D. Riggs, Ph.D., in 1978, which is still used today by many of the estimated 1.5 million Americans with type 1 diabetes, (T1D) and 27 million with type 2 diabetes (T2D). Funding for this transformative research is being led by a gift from the Wanek family, which owns Ashley Furniture Industries, the world's largest home furniture manufacturer. Through the generosity of the family and gifts from an anonymous donor, individuals and corporate and foundation partners across the country, City of Hope will be able to devote more than $50 million over the next six years to an innovative research effort, the Wanek Family Project for Type 1 Diabetes, that seeks to find a cure for T1D. Research results may also benefit the larger T2D population. The project will create a series of highly-focused programs based at City of Hope that will use an integrated approach to curing T1D, including immunotherapy approaches, as well as research into beta cell transplantation and preventing the body from rejecting those insulin secreting cells. "City of Hope is best positioned to take on this challenge," said Robert W. Stone, president and chief executive officer of City of Hope. "This is thanks to our 40-year institutional legacy of pioneering treatment and research advances in diabetes. "City of Hope is extremely grateful for the Wanek family's significant gift that will enable the institution to forward type 1 diabetes research, th Continue reading >>

A Quest: Insulin-releasing Implant For Type-1 Diabetes

A Quest: Insulin-releasing Implant For Type-1 Diabetes

Scientists in California think they may have found a way to transplant insulin-producing cells into diabetic patients who lack those cells — and protect the little insulin-producers from immune rejection. Their system, one of several promising approaches under development, hasn't yet been tested in people. But if it works, it could make living with diabetes much less of a burden. For now, patients with Type-1 diabetes have to regularly test their blood sugar levels, and inject themselves with insulin when it's needed. Some researchers are developing machines to automate that process. But Crystal Nyitray, founder and CEO of the biotechnology startup Encellin, in San Francisco, didn't want to use a machine to treat diabetes. As a graduate student in bioengineering at the University of California, San Francisco a few years ago, Nyitray wanted to try something different: living cells. "Cells are the ultimate smart machine," she says. Clinical trials that transplant insulin-making pancreatic cells into people with diabetes have been underway for several years, with some success. But the recipient's immune system is hard on these transplanted cells, and most patients still need insulin injections eventually. Nyitray and colleagues designed a system that would encase live islet cells from the pancreas in a flexible membrane that could be implanted under the skin. Insulin and blood sugar could pass through the membrane, but cells from the recipient's immune system would be kept out, preventing immune rejection. "I think of it like if you're sitting in a house and you have the window open with a screen," Nyitray says. "So you can feel the breeze of the air outside, and smell everything, but the bugs and the flies aren't able to get through because you have the screen in place. Continue reading >>

Type 2 Diabetes Breakthrough: Scientists Create First Pill That Not Only Stops The Condition In Its Tracks But Also Helps Patients Lose Weight - And It Could Be Available On The Nhs Within 3 Years

Type 2 Diabetes Breakthrough: Scientists Create First Pill That Not Only Stops The Condition In Its Tracks But Also Helps Patients Lose Weight - And It Could Be Available On The Nhs Within 3 Years

Scientists have created a new pill that can halt type 2 diabetes in its tracks and help patients shed pounds from their waistlines, a major study has revealed. Results from a human trial of 632 patients found semaglutide allowed 71 per cent of them to shed pounds - it is believed this is the first type 2 diabetes pill to instigate weight loss. Researchers hope semaglutide will offer a better way to control the hidden killer, as some treatments currently available can trigger unexpected weight gain which fuels type 2 diabetes. Results from the phase II trial carried out by the Leicester Diabetes Centre were published in the prestigious JAMA. Semaglutide could be available on the NHS within three years. The pill was handed as an add-on to patients already taking Metformin - the drug is the first line of defence to control the preventable condition. Researchers discovered semaglutide stopped type 2 diabetes in its tracks, slashed blood sugar levels and prevented patients from needing insulin. Type 2 diabetes can lead to heart failure, blindness and leg amputations and is deemed a global time bomb. Spiraling obesity rates have fuelled a 65 per cent rise in diagnoses in a decade, with more than 4 million people now living with the condition, UK data shows. Globally there are 380 million patients. Charities have warned the NHS will become crippled by the burden of the condition without urgent action to make changes to today’s lifestyles. Professor Melanie Davies, lead author, dubbed the results 'hugely promising' and said they show 'semaglutide’s ability to lower HbA1c and support weight loss'. Offering patients some relief Lead author Professor Melanie Davies said taking semaglutide as a pill may provide relief to some diabetics who 'struggle injecting themselves'. She t Continue reading >>

This Scientific Breakthrough Could Be The Next Miracle Cure For Type 1 Diabetes

This Scientific Breakthrough Could Be The Next Miracle Cure For Type 1 Diabetes

Attention, all type 1 diabetics: Your days of insulin injections may be numbered, thanks to a revolutionary new medicine. California-based company ViaCyte just developed a stem cell implant called PEC-Direct, and it could be the next miracle cure for diabetes. The implant grows insulin-producing cells from stem cells, which would eventually help manage glucose levels in type 1 diabetes patients. If the implant successfully passes the clinical trials, patients would no longer need to inject themselves with insulin. (And, more good news: researchers are looking into ways to reverse type 1 diabetes.) “Patients with high-risk type 1 diabetes complications, such as hypoglycemia unawareness, are at constant risk of life-threatening low blood glucose,” clinical trial investigator Jeremy Pettus from University of California, San Diego, said in a press release. “The PEC-Direct islet cell replacement therapy is designed to help patients with the most urgent medical need.” Placed just below the skin, these implants are no larger than credit cards—but they could have a life-changing impact for diabetics. As the stem cells mature inside the human body, they will become specialized pancreas cells that release insulin automatically when needed. “There are limited treatment options for patients with high-risk type 1 diabetes to manage life-threatening hypoglycemic episodes,” added ViaCyte president and CEO Paul Laikind. “We believe that the PEC-Direct product candidate has the potential to transform the lives of these patients.” Clinical trials just began last week. Two patients received injections of PEC-Direct implants and will be monitored for the next several months. If all goes according to plan, the cells will mature in three months and begin releasing insulin a Continue reading >>

New Diabetes Breakthrough May End Insulin Shots For Good

New Diabetes Breakthrough May End Insulin Shots For Good

Every day, an estimated 6,800 new peer-reviewed academic articles are published. That’s a whole lot of science to wade through—but don’t fret. We’ll do the legwork for you, each and every morning. Here’s your daily dose of the latest discoveries from journals, research institutions, and news outlets from around the world. A new scientific breakthrough has cured diabetes in mice—with no side effects, researchers from UT Health San Antonio reported. The process uses a technique called gene transfer, which increases the types of cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. That’s important, because insulin-producing cells are destroyed in type-1 diabetes, and they fail in type-2 diabetes. If this procedure is replicated in humans, it has the potential to cure type-1 diabetes and allow type-2 diabetics to stop their insulin shots, the researchers believe. The scientists hope to bring this technique to human trials within three years. We’ve reported before on all of the benefits of coffee, but its sister drink is no slacker as a health-helper, either: Drinking tea can help your heart, a new study from China found. Daily tea drinkers were 10 percent less likely to have a major heart event, like a heart attack, over the seven-year follow up than those who never drank the beverage. The cure for eczema may be near, after researchers from Newcastle University have made a breakthrough over what’s causing the itchy skin disease. The researchers discovered that lacking a key protein called filaggrin alters the pathways responsible for triggering eczema. This can possible ID potential targets for future drug development, they say. If your parents still hold outdated health beliefs, they may be putting your child at risk, new research presented at the Pediatric Academ Continue reading >>

Innovative Type 1 Diabetes Approach Licensed To Encellin

Innovative Type 1 Diabetes Approach Licensed To Encellin

Encellin, a San Francisco–based biotechnology company, has obtained exclusive worldwide rights from UC San Francisco for a proprietary cell encapsulation technology aimed at improving physicians’ ability to perform cell transplants without the need for immunosuppressive drugs. Based on ongoing preclinical trials in animal models, the technology – in the form of a pouch approximately the diameter of a quarter, made of an ultrathin nanoporous membrane – represents a significant advance towards the ability to transplant donated cells without danger of immune rejection or harmful fibrosis at the transplant site, while also ensuring that transplanted cells cannot infiltrate other parts of the body. Encellin first aims to apply this technology – originally developed in the laboratory of Tejal Desai, PhD, chair of the Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences in UCSF’s schools of Pharmacy and Medicine – to treat type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune disease affecting over 1 million Americans, with over 9,000 young people newly diagnosed each year. Type 1 diabetes is caused by the loss of the islet cells of the pancreas, which normally secrete the hormone insulin to coordinate the body’s use of blood glucose. The transplantation of functional, insulin-producing pancreatic islet cells from a donor has shown clinical efficacy as a treatment for some people with type 1 diabetes, but – like most transplantation techniques – this treatment requires lifelong immunosuppression to prevent patient immune systems from destroying the donor cells. However, these immunosuppression drugs also make patients susceptible to heightened risk of infection, cancer, and organ damage. Encellin’s device will encapsulate glucose-sensitive, insulin-producing islet cells in a p Continue reading >>

Researchers Study Cure For Type 1 Diabetes In Stem Cell Transplantations

Researchers Study Cure For Type 1 Diabetes In Stem Cell Transplantations

Bart Roep, Ph.D., the Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and professor/founding chair of the Department of Diabetes Immunology (Photo: Business Wire) DUARTE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Some type 1 diabetes (T1D) patients can be cured from the disease, at least for a number of years, with a stem cell transplant — those were the results of a clinical trial monitored by City of Hope’s Bart Roep, Ph.D., the Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and professor/founding chair, Department of Diabetes Immunology. The results were published recently in the journal, Frontiers in Immunology. Trial by @cityofhope researchers shows T1D patients cured, at least for few years, with stem cell transplant Tweet this “This means we can cure type 1 diabetes, be it with a risky therapy — although one that is also very successful in cancer, and one for which City of Hope is a world-renowned expert, with more than 13,000 patients having received similar treatment for blood cancers,” said Roep, director of The Wanek Family Project for Type 1 Diabetes, which aims to find a cure for T1D in six years. “We now understand stem cell transplants can succeed in treating diabetes for some, but not in others, and we can predict either outcome before the therapy is administered by ‘reading’ the immune signature of the patient with a novel nanotechnology that I developed.” An international team of researchers, including Roep, conducted the trial in Brazil. It showed that autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (AHSCT), which uses a person’s own stem cells, increases C-peptide levels — that show how much insulin is being made by the pancreas — and induces insulin independence in patients with T1D. This is possible because the transpla Continue reading >>

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