Juvenile diabetes mellitus, or otherwise known as type 1, which occurs when the pancreas does not produce insulin at all, shows a significant increase in its frequency in Europe in recent years. At the same time, however, the applications of stem cell therapies, which scientists hope will win, grow.
Last week, the pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk, as part of a news briefing at its headquarters in Denmark, announced the launch of a stem cell development program to treat type 1 diabetes.
The program, which is being developed in collaboration with the University of California-San Francisco-UCSF, is still at an early stage, but clinical trials are expected in the coming years, the Athens News Agency reports.
According to the Vice President and Head of the Science Division of the company, Mans Crozgard Thomsen, after a two-decade research, progress has been made to result in preclinical evidence of the differentiation of pluripotent stem cells in insulin-producing pancreatic β-cells.
It is noted that stem cell therapy involves replacing β-cells that are not present in people with type 1 diabetes. “If progress of this type of treatment continues, it could mean that people with the disease will no longer rely on insulin, “said Krassgard Thomsen.
“Through collaboration with Cornell University, significant advances have been made in developing an encapsulation technology that will protect β-cells when transplanted into patients. The device is designed to prevent the patient’s immune system from attacking cells. ” The vice president also said the company was granted exclusive license to technology that allows the production of “good human embryonic stem cell lines”.
Treatments for Parkinson’s, heart failure, and macula are also developing
“Our collaboration with the UCSF is also expected to accelerate current and future collaborations for the development of stem cell therapies and other serious chronic conditions,” he said.
And he added: “Through collaborations with the Swedish biotechnology company Biolamina and the University of Lund, activities have begun to develop stem cell-based therapies for Parkinson’s disease. In another collaboration with Biolamina and the Medical School of Singapore’s DUKE University, research focuses on heart failure and macular degeneration associated with age. “