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Healthy, insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas have a relatively long life and typically do not replicate under normal conditions. Any loss of beta cells, therefore, is usually permanent. In the case of type 1 diabetes, for example, the destruction of beta cells by the body's own immune system is permanent.
2 comments - Apr 9, 2010 -
You may not have heard of GAD, but it's a hot topic in the world of type 1 diabetes research. GAD, which stands for glutamic acid decarboxylase, is an enzyme in the brain and the pancreas that plays several roles in the body. As an enzyme, it converts the excitatory amino acid glutamate into the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which nerve cells use to communicate. But it also has a less helpful role, as an autoantigen (an element of self that provokes the generation of antibodies) in autoimmune diabetes.
4 comments - Mar 23, 2010 -
An enzyme that destroys pancreatic beta cells in lab mice has now been observed in human beta cells. Because scientists already know how to delete the mouse gene that produces the enzyme, they are hopeful that the same therapy can eventually be applied to people with type 1 diabetes. If so, it would be one of the most powerful therapies yet for addressing the destruction of insulin-producing beta cells that causes type 1.
4 comments - Mar 1, 2010 -
A hormone responsible for the body's stress response is also linked to the growth of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas, according to JDRF- funded researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in California. The findings are the latest advances to underscore the potential for regeneration as a key component of a possible cure for type 1 diabetes.
2 comments - Feb 22, 2010 -
Researchers at RIKEN and Fukuoka University have pinpointed the mechanism responsible for early rejection of transplanted pancreatic islet cells in the treatment of type 1 diabetes. A new system based on this mechanism has been shown to vastly increase transplant efficiency, setting the stage for the development of powerful new treatment techniques.
5 comments - Feb 9, 2010 -
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Researchers have transformed ordinary mouse skin cells directly into neurons, bypassing the need for stem cells or even stemlike cells and greatly speeding up the field of regenerative medicine.
0 comments - Jan 29, 2010 -
An international research consortium has found 13 new genetic variants that influence blood glucose regulation, insulin resistance, and the function of insulin-secreting beta cells in populations of European descent. Five of the newly discovered variants increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, the most common form of diabetes.
2 comments - Jan 23, 2010 -
BOSTON, Mass. - Dec. 23, 2009 - Cells in your body are constantly churning out poisonous forms of oxygen (oxidants) and mopping them up with a countervailing force of proteins and chemicals (anti-oxidants). This balancing act of oxidative stress is particularly likely to go haywire in beta cells, the insulin-producing cells that malfunction and then start to die off in type 2 diabetes.
2 comments - Dec 29, 2009 -
Rituxamab, a drug that treats lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis, may soon be used to help combat the destruction of pancreatic beta cells in newly diagnosed cases of type 1 diabetes. Researchers at Indiana University have found that the drug, originally developed and sold by Genentech as Rituxan, temporarily slows or stops the destruction of the 10 or 20 percent of beta cells that type 1s typically have remaining when they are first diagnosed.
0 comments - Dec 21, 2009 -
NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2009 - The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, a leader in setting the agenda for diabetes research worldwide, said today that it will begin working with The Johnson & Johnson Corporate Office of Science and Technology, and its affiliates, to speed the development of drug targets and pathways to promote the survival and function of insulin-producing cells in people who have diabetes. The program will look to fund research at academic centers around the world that could eventually lead to novel drug targets and industry collaborations for the treatment of type 1 diabetes.
2 comments - Dec 19, 2009 -
Diabetes Health is the essential resource for people living with diabetes- both newly diagnosed and experienced as well as the professionals who care for them. We provide balanced expert news and information on living healthfully with diabetes. Each issue includes cutting-edge editorial coverage of new products, research, treatment options, and meaningful lifestyle issues.