Sue Marshall blogs about diabetes for Desang

Company Hopes New Drug is Major Type 1 Breakthrough

April 13, 2010
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Diabetes Newshound reports a new drug that helps the immune system to “tolerate” insulin-producing cells that it would otherwise mistakenly attack and destroy is being trialed by 240 patients…

Tolerx Inc. should know by the end of the year whether or not they have created one of the most significant developments in preventing or slowing Type 1 diabetes, according to a recent article published by the Boston Globe.

The company said that it has completed the enrollment of 240 patients in a clinical trial of otelixizumab, a drug that aims to help the body’s immune system to “tolerate” insulin-producing cells that it would otherwise mistakenly attack and destroy.

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which the body attacks its own insulin-producing cells, mistaking them for foreign cells. People need insulin, the hormone that regulates sugar in the blood. People with Type 1 diabetes need to inject the hormone into their body several times each day.

The company says it could eventually offer an eight-day course of intravenous infusions of the drug for people recently diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. The treatment could reduce the need for daily insulin shots and helping the patients control their blood sugar levels.

via: Company Hopes New Drug is Major Type 1 Breakthrough


Islet transplantation in the news

April 8, 2010
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Just reading about Richard Lane — first man in the UK to have an islet transplant, and the support that the JDRF gives to the transplant initiative. The Edmonton Protocol sounds like the name of a sub-Bondian adventure novel, but it’s top-class research into life-saving treatment for Type 1 diabetes — so far MORE exciting!

Islet transplantation in the news.


Doctors ‘Cure’ Wounded Soldier’s Diabetes With Experimental Surgery | Diabetes News Hound

January 8, 2010
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Doctors performed an experimental, but successful surgery on a wounded serviceman that they believe may lead to a permanent cure for diabetes, according to a recent article published by the Miami Herald.

Airman Tre F. Porfirio, 21, was shot in the back while fighting in Afghanistan. His pancreas and several other organs were severely wounded. Doctors had to remove his pancreas, which can lead to a severe form of diabetes. The pancreas is responsible for insulin production, the enzyme that controls the body’s blood sugar levels.

The damaged pancreas was removed and flown to the University of Miami where doctors salvaged insulin-producing cells from the damaged organ. The cells were then flown back and transplanted into Porfirio’s liver.

Three weeks after the procedure, the transplanted cells are producing insulin. However, doctors are giving Porfirio insulin as well because they do not want to put excess strain on the newly transplanted cells. Doctors say the transplanted cells will develop their own blood vessels in a matter of weeks.

via Doctors ‘Cure’ Wounded Soldier’s Diabetes With Experimental Surgery | Diabetes News Hound.


Type 1 ‘Cure’ Surgery on Path to Open to Wider Group of Diabetics | Diabetes News Hound

January 6, 2010
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With progress with the anti-rejection drugs, about 90% of patients that undergo the procedure are insulin-free three years after the transplant, according to Dr. James Shapiro, program director at the Edmonton Protocol, one of the leading research facilities for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. The facility had performed 250 procedures for 120 patients so far, according to the Calgary Herald article.

via Type 1 ‘Cure’ Surgery on Path to Open to Wider Group of Diabetics | Diabetes News Hound.


Existing drug shows promise for treating type 1 diabetes – Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)

December 9, 2009
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A drug used to treat non-Hodgkins lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis has been shown to protect insulin producing cells in people with new onset type 1.

Findings from this JDRF funded study in America and reported this month in the New England Journal of Medicine, indicated that rituximab (Rituxan) could help people with type 1 diabetes keep producing some of their own insulin.

via Existing drug shows promise for treating type 1 diabetes – Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).


Novocell Receives a Disease Team Award for $20 Million from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to Develop a Stem Cell Therapy for the Treatment of Diabetes | Reuters

November 6, 2009
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Investment, in the form of a research grant, will mean Novocell can look into a first-of-its kind cellular therapy for the treatment of diabetes — implanted cells that can secrete insulin.

Novocell Receives a Disease Team Award for $20 Million from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine to Develop a Stem Cell Therapy for the Treatment of Diabetes | Reuters.


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