UCalgary Researcher Signs Deal To Develop Nanomedicines For Treatment Of Type 1 Diabetes

UCalgary researcher signs deal to develop nanomedicines for treatment of Type 1 diabetes

UCalgary researcher signs deal to develop nanomedicines for treatment of Type 1 diabetes

Photo courtesy Cumming School of Medicine
When Dr. Pere Santamaria arrived in Calgary in 1992 to join the Cumming School of Medicine, he never could have imagined he would make a groundbreaking discovery that would lead to a spinoff company. “When I arrived, I found out that the grant money I was expecting hadn’t come through,” says Santamaria, a professor in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Infectious Diseases and member of the Snyder Institute for Chronic Diseases. “So I had an empty lab with no research assistants and no salary. I had to beg my supervisor to give me $10,000 to start my research.”
Despite the rocky start, Santamaria has achieved something many scientists dream of — making a discovery that has practical applications for health care. Santamaria’s discovery revolves around the use of nanoparticles coated in proteins to treat autoimmune and inflammatory disorders.
“They can be modified for different diseases, such as Type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis and rheumatoid arthritis without compromising the entire immune system,” Santamaria explains. “Instead, they basically work to reset the immune system.”
Nanomedicine’s unique mechanism has the potential to disrupt the pharmaceutical industry entirely. Developing a new class of drugs is rare. With the assistance of Innovate Calgary, Santamaria started a company, Parvus Therapeutics Inc., to represent the technology and explore ways of bringing it to market. Announced in April 2017, Parvus entered into an exclusive deal with the Swiss pharma giant Novartis, hopefully leading Continue reading

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Roundup: News from the Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes conference

Roundup: News from the Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes conference

Roundup: News from the Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes conference
This week in Paris, companies in the diabetes managment space came together at theAdvanced Technologies and Treatments for Diabetes conference to share news and, mostly, a lot of efficacy data. It's an exciting time for the space as closed-loop systems that allow people with diabetes to monitor their glucose continuously and automatically manage their insulin dosing get closer and closer to becoming a validated, regulated reality for people with Type 1 diabetes. We didn't make it out to Paris ourselves, but we're covering the news. We've written up some of the bigger stories from the conference earlier this week. Look below for a roundup of other digital health news from the show.
Nonprofit organizationT1D Exchangepublished a major study in Diabetes Care yesterday (and presented the research at the conference). The data re-affirms the FDA's recent clearance ofDexcom's CGM for insulin dosing. The study looked at 226 adult CGM users for six months. Of those, 149 dosed their insulin using the CGM and 77 used a fingerstick glucometer in addition, as is currently required for most CGMs. There was no difference in outcomes between the two groups.
"This study is an important step to support regulatory pathways for the automation of insulin delivery for people with type 1 diabetes, Dana Ball, executive director and co-founder of T1D Exchange, said in a statement. These data are supportive of the recent FDA decision to approve the Dexcom G5 indication for insulin dosing and removes a key obstacle Continue reading

Asthma drug shows promise in treating obesity and diabetes

Asthma drug shows promise in treating obesity and diabetes

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- After 12 weeks of taking an anti-inflammatory asthma drug, obese patients with type 2 diabetes (link is external) showed a clinically significant drop in blood glucose.
The drug amlexanox, prescribed in Japan to treat asthma, appeared to free the metabolic system to burn more energy. A subset of patients had improved fatty liver disease and insulin sensitivity, a response seen among those who started the clinical trial with higher levels of inflammation in their fat tissue than others.
While the discovery at Michigan Medicine and the University of California at San Diego (link is external) is not ready for the clinic, it reveals an inflammatory link between obesity and type 2 diabetes.
Inflammation is the body’s natural response to injury and illness, but chronic inflammation caused by obesity is believed to promote insulin resistance, a main feature of diabetes.
“We are beginning to understand the role this form of internal inflammation plays in the development of chronic diseases like diabetes,” says lead study author Elif Oral, M.D., director of the MEND Obesity and Metabolic Disorder Program at Michigan Medicine (link is external). “Ultimately we may be able to personalize therapy based on the degree of inflammation present at baseline – which is a new concept.”
Oral is an endocrinologist and translational scientist at Michigan Medicine, the University of Michigan (link is external)’s academic medical center where the clinical trial was conducted and analyzed.
Tissue analysis was led by study author Alan R. Saltiel, Ph.D. (link is exter Continue reading

Tackling Travel with Diabetes: Airport & Plane Food Secrets

Tackling Travel with Diabetes: Airport & Plane Food Secrets

Tackling Travel with Diabetes: Airport & Plane Food Secrets
Adam, what do you eat when youre on a plane? My six go-to strategies from hundreds of flights and airports
Q: Hi Adam, like you, I also travel a lot. What do you eat when youre on a plane for so many hours? I tend to go high as the plane food is not what people with diabetes need. What do you think? F.A. (Lisbon, Portugal)
A: Thanks for this great question its one I think about a lot! I spend hundreds of hours every year in airports and on planes. But before I get into tactics, there are two ground rules I try to remember:
1. If Im not hungry, I DO NOT EAT. This is especially critical while traveling, since:
A. Junk food is everywhere and continuously tempting in airports. There are so many opportunities to make unhelpful food choices, especially when I see food but am not actually hungry.
B. Im more likely to be sleep deprived and stressed while traveling, which drive insulin resistance, sugar/carb cravings, and worse food choices. If I fall into such choices when Im not even hungry, high blood sugars are almost guaranteed.
2. I can avoid Diabetes Landmines with a pre-loaded plan of attack. How can I set up a Bright Spot choice instead? No matter the food environment I find myself in, I can usually change my default options by thinking ahead. Travel does bringa lot of uncertainty, but much of it is actually quite predictable I know what restaurants and snack options will be in my nearby airport, I know Ill be able to access my carry-on bag, etc.
With those ground rules in mind, here are six tools I us Continue reading

National Day Rally 2017: Beating diabetes starts with small steps, says PM Lee

National Day Rally 2017: Beating diabetes starts with small steps, says PM Lee

Eat right, exercise more, get your health checked regularly and think twice about picking up that can of soft drink.
These are Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong's words of advice to Singaporeans who want to beat diabetes.
"It takes effort and discipline, but it can be done," he told the audience during yesterday's National Day Rally, where he devoted a third of his time to speaking about the chronic illness.
Mr Lee, who has a family history of the disease, said winning the war against diabetes often starts with the little things.
"Genes play a part, but your choices make a difference," he said, sharing how he tries to make healthier choices in everyday life.
"Wholemeal bread instead of white bread. Teh-o kosong instead of teh.
"But if the dessert is chendol, it can't be helped. I will just take a little bit."
The average Singaporean can expect to live up to the age of 82 - among the longest lifespans in the world.
But many will spend around eight years of this time in poor health, with the culprit often being diabetes, Mr Lee said.
While diabetes is often a silent illness, its complications - which range from kidney failure to blindness and even impotency in men - can prove debilitating.
Roughly 400,000 Singapore residents have diabetes.
A significant proportion of them do not even know it.
Diabetes also becomes more prevalent as people age, and is estimated to affect nearly a third of Singaporeans aged over 60.
The Government alone cannot solve this problem, Mr Lee said. It is a matter of personal responsibility.
The first thing people should do is find out where they stand b Continue reading

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