Studies Test Approaches to Halt Diabetes Onset
While many of the DRI’s efforts are focused on achieving insulin independence through cell replacement strategies, studies are also being conducted to characterize and better understand the genetic and immunological causes of diabetes.
Our goals are to identify strategies to prevent the onset of diabetes in those at risk, halt the progression of diabetes in newly-diagnosed patients and enhance the long-term success of cellular therapies and other methods aimed at curing diabetes.
Our areas of clinical study include:
- Trial Net: Several of our DRI researchers are part of the national leadership of TrialNet. Funded by The National Institutes of Health (NIH), this program enables researchers around the world to perform intervention studies aimed at preserving insulin-producing cells in individuals with newly-onset diabetes, or in those at risk of developing the disease.
TrialNet is also involved in studies to standardize laboratory tests to better define the disease stage and response to therapy in individuals participating in clinical trials.
TrialNet utilizes a nationwide infrastructure of screening sites, which is the framework for conducting new clinical trials in the U.S. and Canada. In addition, a number of clinical centers in the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, Finland, Australia and New Zealand have recently been included in TrialNet.
This effort established a global research network with regional clinical centers that make clinical trials accessible to families affected by type 1 diabetes.
If you would like more information about Type 1 Diabetes TrialNet and its active studies, please contact us or visit the TrialNet Web site.
This DRI program is focused on understanding how genetic and immunological factors play a role in the development of type 1 diabetes and, by contrast, how certain genetic and immunological factors may actually afford protection from diabetes.
Integrating the studies of genetics and immunology of human diabetes, our investigators are uncovering ways to interfere with the immune cells that attack the insulin producing cells in the pancreas resulting in diabetes. This is a critical factor for both preventing and curing diabetes, since the immune cells that caused diabetes in the first place might be reactivated and damage the transplanted insulin-producing cells.