SCIENTISTS FOUND A WAY TO GENERATE INSULIN-PRODUCING BETA CELLS

 

More than one million people in the United States are living with type 1 diabetes according to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There is a strong push to improve management of the disease and find a cure. The more researchers learn about T1D, the more precise their prevention and treatment methods become.

A recent study reveals that improvements in stem cell therapy have reversed T1D in mice for at least nine months and, in some cases, for more than a year. One of the challenges that scientists have faced with using human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs) is that it can be difficult to zero differentiation in one specific type of cell. Often multiple types of pancreatic cells are produced. While there may be an abundance of cells that scientists want, the infiltration of excess cells that are not needed diminishes their impact (even though they are not harmful).

Scientists at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have found a way to generate insulin-producing beta cells without creating as many irrelevant cells. Their approach focuses on the cell’s cytoskeleton, which is its inner framework. Through this process, they were able to produce vast amounts of beta cells that are able to normalize blood glucose levels.

When transplanted into severely diabetic mice (blood glucose levels above 500 mg/dL), the cells effectively reversed the effects of diabetes and brought blood sugar levels down into the target range within two weeks. Normoglycemia was maintained for at least nine months.

This is a major step forward in stem cell therapy and the use of hPSCs to potentially cure diabetes one day. There is still more testing and research that needs to be done before this approach is applied to human trials.

Ongoing research is essential for finding a cure for T1D. Diabetes Research Connection supports these efforts by providing critical funding to early-career scientists pursuing novel research studies on the disease. By giving them the means to complete their projects, these researchers can continue to advance knowledge and treatment options.

The source: https://diabetesresearchconnection.org

Dexcom Launches Crucial Patient Assistance Program As Result of COVID-19 Pandemic!

Dexcom Launches Crucial Patient Assistance Program As Result of COVID-19 Pandemic!

The COVID-19 pandemic has put immense pressure on both individuals with T1D, and the organizations who provide them with vital supplies and medications. While there’s no doubt that people with T1D face a more uncertain and risk-filled future as we navigate quarantine and social distancing, there have been some promising steps from several sides that have eased burdens and continue to help those who are struggling.


One of the most vital elements of care and population health for those with T1D is meeting a continued need for medical supplies and vital prescriptions such as insulin, injection devices, and continuous glucose monitors (CGMs_. To this end, many of the prominent pharmaceutical and device companies in the T1D sector have taken extraordinary measures to help their customers and clients.
In response to the crisis, Dexcom, a technological leader in continuous glucose monitoring (CGM)systems and diabetes care have announced welcome news for people with T1D: A new patient assistance program to aid current U.S. customers who have lost insurance due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


The program will offer eligible customers two (2) ninety 90-day supply shipments, with each dispatch including one transmitter and three boxes of sensors at just $45 per 90-day shipment.


“As unemployment rates continue to rise, we want to help our customers who rely on Dexcom CGM systems to manage their diabetes but have lost insurance coverage due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Kevin Sayer, chairman, president, and CEO of Dexcom. “Access to Dexcom CGM systems has never been more important than it is during this pandemic, and we are committed to taking care of our customers as best as we can during these challenging and uncertain times.”


The Dexcom COVID-19 patient assistance program will be available to current U.S. customers who have lost insurance coverage as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Customers that are eligible for coverage of their Dexcom CGM systems under a federal or state government program (such as Medicare, Medicaid, or VA benefits) are not eligible to participate in this program. The program will launch in the next several weeks and will be available for the duration of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.
For the latest information about the patient assistance program, customers can visit dexcom.com/assistance.