A new islet cell replacement therapy, with advantages over islet cell transplantation, has had an application to start human trials submitted to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The new technology is called ‘beta cell encapsulation therapy’ and serves to replace the insulin producing beta cells of the pancreas that are destroyed by type 1 diabetes. The technology is a result of collaboration between ViaCyte, a pharmaceutical company from San Diego in the USA, and the type 1 diabetes charity, the JDRF.
The most common treatment in type 1 diabetes is to take insulin injections but this can be complicated to manage and can result in dangerously low blood glucose levels (severe hypoglycemia) if errors are made.
A small number of people with type 1diabetes that are at greatly increased risk of severe hypos may apply for islet cell transplantation, a procedure in which pancreatic beta cells (also known as islet cells) are transplanted into the body. Islet cell transplants can be very effective at improving control and reducing hypoglycemia but they require the transplant recipient to take strong immunosuppressive drugs to prevent type 1 diabetes from attacking the newly transplanted cells. These drugs have disadvantages as they render the immune system …read more
Source: News from Diabetes.co.uk