Type 1 diabetes trial patient insulin-free after treatment
A new type 1 diabetes trial has left one participant completely insulin-free.
The trial, conducted by the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI) at the University of Miami, involved the implantation of islet cells within a biological scaffold.
Wendy Peacock, 43, underwent the procedure on August 18, 2015. For the first time since being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 17, Wendy can now naturally produce her own insulin.
How does the islet cell trial work?
Building on previous islet cell transplant research, the trial is working towards the development of a "mini-organ" that mimic the function of a healthy pancreas. This organ, known as the DRI BioHub, allows people with type 1 diabetes to produce their own insulin.
"The first subject in our Phase I/II pilot BioHub trial is now completely off insulin with an excellent glucose profile," said Camillo Ricordi, MD, director of the DRI.
"These are the best post-transplant results we've seen in an islet recipient."
"This was the first tissue engineered islet transplant using a 'biodegradable scaffold' implanted on the surface of the omentum. The technique has been designed to minimise the inflammatory reaction that is normally observed when islets are implanted in the liver or in other sites with immediate contact to the blood."
Islet cell transplants and immunosuppressant therapy
Currently, people with type 1 diabetes who benefit from islet cell transplantation need to take immunosuppressant drugs to stop the immune system attacking the new, functional islet cells too. Immunosuppressant drugs, while useful in this respect, also preve Continue reading