Insulin Cocktails, Mouse Cures, Group Appointments

Our latest Type 1 treatment roundup.



An Insulin Cocktail?

shutterstock_110035544_cocktail_200pxA group of European health regulators have recommended the approval of a drug treatment that combines long-lasting insulin with a drug that promotes insulin secretion. The combo drug would combine Novo Nordisk’s long-acting insulin and its insulin-promoting GLP-1 drug into a new product that would be called Xultophy, according to Fierce Biotech. The seal of approval from these regulators could mean the the new drug would be available in the European Union in a matter of months. U.S. regulators, however, remain skeptical; last year, they rejected the insulin in the drug combo (Tresiba) because of potential cardiovascular risks.

Keep Your Kidneys

A new study is examining whether a common gout medication can help prevent kidney disease in people with Type 1 diabetes. Researchers in 11 different locations are recruiting volunteers to see whether the drug allopurinol might delay the need for kidney dialysis or transplant for 8 to 10 years, according to the StarTribune. The drug has been used for over 50 years to prevent gout flare-up, so taking the drug should pose little health risk. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure in the U.S.

Stressed Out Cells

shutterstock_54954403_scared_mouse_200pxUCSF scientists have figured out a way to block diabetes in mice by preventing stressed-out cells from being killed off by the body. They used a chemical compound, called KIRA6, to alter the body’s cellular life-or-death signaling network, preventing it from eliminating damaged islet cells in mice prone to a form of early-onset diabetes. The process also was used to prevent a form of blindness in the whiskered test subjects, according to an article in Fierce Biotech Research. Of course, pancreatic mouse cells are simpler than pancreatic human cells, so stay tuned if this will mean anything.

Social Creatures

shutterstock_179872442_group_therapy_200pxA Canadian study found that group sessions had a better outcome than individual appointments when it came to diabetes self-care. Ontario researchers discovered that when people with diabetes attend group sessions they have lower rates of visits to the emergency room, hospital admission rates for hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia, and fewer foot ulcers, according to an article in Medscape Multispecialty. The study did not distinguish between patients with Type 1 diabetes and patients with Type 2 diabetes. Researchers believe this is because in group visits the visits are longer and people get to talk about their feelings.

Move to Ecuador?

Australian researchers have found that rates of Type 1 diabetes might increase the further you are from the equator. Using 19 years of health data, the researchers determined the rates of Type 1 diabetes were twice as high in the southern half of the state of Western Australia than in the northern half. That rate was determined after the researchers ruled out all other possible societal factors, including socioeconomic differences, according to an article in The West Australian. Researchers hypothesize that this might occur because of decreased exposure to the sun, which means lower rates of Vitamin D.

Put Down the Muffin

shutterstock_93060559_bread_caution_200pxJust in case you needed a reminder, a multinational team of researchers have announced that a low-carbohydrate diet is the best default mechanism for controlling both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes. Through clinical trials, the researchers have determined that a low-carb diet will reduce insulin intake; it also has few side effects, unlike any other medicinal intervention to control diabetes. The researchers recommended that it’s best to swap carbs for protein, according to a report in Diabetes.co.uk.

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Craig Idlebrook is a past editor for Insulin Nation, Type 2 Nation, and Información Sobre Diabetes. He is now the community engagement and content manager for T1D Exchange.