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Scientists Discover Cure For Diabetes by afechosen(m): 7:32am On Oct 15, 2014
There is good news for diabetic
patients. They will no longer
need to inject insulin – thanks to
a treatment involving the use of
insulin-producing cells which
Harvard University scientists
discovered how to make.
The cure could, therefore, be
imminent as the scientists have
produced large volumes of
laboratory-grown pancreatic
cells required for one-off
transplantation in patients.
The breakthrough has been
hailed and compared to the
invention of antibiotics. It
involved identifying how to
efficiently turn both stem cell
types into beta cells.
The cells, millions of which were
manufactured, produced insulin,
responded to glucose, worked on
mice for many months and will
soon be used to treat humans.
The discovery is the result of 23
years of research by Harvard
Professor Doug Melton, whose
study of type 1 diabetes was
prompted by his son having the
condition as a six-month-old. His
daughter received the same
diagnoses.
The cells could be used to treat
all patients rather than each
person needing their own
genetically matched treatment.
The cells tested on mice were
placed in a porous capsule to
protect them from attacks by the
body’s immune system, while
allowing the insulin to diffuse
out.
This means the cells could be
produced on an industrial scale
and used on patients without
possible immune rejection,
while the capsule could be
replaced if it stopped working.
A report on the work is
published in the October 10
edition of the journal Cell.
Online reports quoted Prof
Melton as saying: “It was
gratifying to know that we could
do something that we always
thought was possible, but many
people felt it wouldn’t work. We
are now just one pre-clinical
step away from the finish line.”
Asked about his children’s
reaction he said: “I think like all
kids, they always assumed that if
I said I’d do this, I’d do it.”
Prof Melton said the stem cell-
derived beta cells are presently
undergoing trials in animal
models, including non-human
primates, where they are still
producing insulin after several
months,.
The team at Harvard used
embryonic stem cells to produce
human insulin-producing cells
equivalent in almost every way
to normally functioning cells.
The Telegraph quoted Professor
of Regenerative Medicine,
University College London Chris
Mason as saying the discovery
was “potentially a major medical
breakthrough”.
“If this scalable technology is
proven to work in both the clinic
and in the manufacturing
facility, the impact on the
treatment of diabetes will be a
medical game-changer on a par
with antibiotics and bacterial
infections,” he said.
Head of Institute of Integrative
Biology at the University of
Liverpool, Prof Anthony
Hollander, added: “This is very
exciting fundamental research
that solves a major roadblock in
the development of a stem cell
treatment for diabetes.
“The study provides a very
elegant and convincing method
for generating functional
insulin-producing cells in large
numbers.”
Prof Mark Dunne of Manchester
University said: “Overall this is
an important advance for the
field of diabetes and people with
Type 1 diabetes.”
Prof Elaine Fuchs of Rockefeller
University described the findings
as “one of the most important
advances to date in the stem cell
field”, adding: “For decades,
researchers have tried to
generate human pancreatic beta
cells that could be cultured and
passaged long term under
conditions where they produce
insulin.”
Type 1 diabetes is an
autoimmune condition that
causes the pancreas to stop
producing insulin – the
hormone that regulates blood
glucose levels.
If the amount of glucose in the
blood is too high it can seriously
damage the body’s organs over
time.
While diabetics can keep their
glucose levels under general
control by injecting insulin, that
does not provide the fine tuning
necessary to properly control
metabolism, which can lead to
devastating complications such
as blindness or loss of limbs.
Re: Scientists Discover Cure For Diabetes by Funjosh(m): 7:35am On Oct 15, 2014
This is good News. I hope your news is real.
Re: Scientists Discover Cure For Diabetes by Zaikon(m): 7:53am On Oct 15, 2014
Since when ? KEDI don cure 100s of diabetes patient
Re: Scientists Discover Cure For Diabetes by disaac73(m): 7:58am On Oct 15, 2014
Wonderful. I'm so happy for Diabetic patients.
Re: Scientists Discover Cure For Diabetes by Lilimax(f): 12:31pm On Oct 15, 2014
This is a great discovery and a major breakthrough in Science smiley
I'm so happy.

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