Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease.
Is a form of diabetes characterized by the destruction of pancreatic beta cells which therefore no longer produce insulin.
The immune system recognizes as foreign and harmful to our body the pancreas cells that produce insulin, attacking them until they are destroyed. This creates a deficiency of this hormone.
Being the insulin necessary to bring glucose into the cells, the person with Type 1 diabetes must take it from the outside and make sure they always have the right amount in the blood. There is no definitive cure for diabetes but research activities are very active and are leading to promising results.
Studies are underway for the implementation of the first artificial pancreas, a device capable of intelligently controlling blood glucose levels and consequently regulating the release of insulin into the body.
It is a device consisting of a micropump (or microinfusion) that contains the insulin and is controlled by a handheld device in which an insulin release program has been inserted.The apparatus communicates with a blood glucose sensor that is applied on the belly and reads the blood glucose, minute by minute.The sensor sends data to the device via Bluetooth and the device, by means of an internal algorithm, processes the data and can predict what will be the variations in blood glucose to order the precise doses of insulin to be injected into the microinfusion.The difference with the microinfusion is that the patient does not have to decide the amount of insulin to be administered, because the artificial pancreas acts independently.
Research is also evolving in the field of stem cells, which is aimed at regenerating the pancreas.
Stem cells are easily adaptable cells that can specialize in the environment they have around them.In the case of diabetes research, it is aimed at the transformation of the cells that make up the internal wall of vases and therefore necessary for revascularization by saving the compromised limbs from neuropathy.
To treat Type 1 diabetes, it is thought to resort to stem cell transplants instead of diseased cells that do not produce more insulin, which could thus use their anti-inflammatory ability to improve the condition of the pancreas and help regenerate it.An operation that could collide with the autoimmune nature of type 1 diabetes, which attacks “foreign” cells by obliging the patient to resort to immunosuppressive drugs.An experimental cure involves transferring the patient’s blood, along with stem cells, to drug additives (a drug that can boost the therapeutic effect of another drug).
Let’s not forget the transplant of pancreas, a very important reality in the treatment of diabetes-related disorders, as it can control the complications of the disease.It is considered, however, as a transient therapy, pending new and more effective solutions.
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