A form of immunotherapy gaining ground as a way to treat childhood food allergies has shown promise in treating another rising scourge of children and young adults: Type 1 diabetes.
In a small but rigorous clinical trial, British investigators gave patients recently diagnosed with the metabolic disorder a truncated version of the chemical that gives rise to insulin.
After a quarter-century of failed efforts to treat diabetes with an immune therapy, the experimental treatment appeared to quell the immune system’s assaults on the body’s insulin-production machinery. The authors of the new study call their experimental treatment “an appealing strategy for prevention,” both in the earliest stages of Type-1 diabetes and in children who are at high genetic risk of developing the disease.
Over the trial’s 12-month duration, eight newly diagnosed diabetic subjects who got a placebo treatment required steadily increasing insulin doses to maintain glycemic control. As their immune systems progressively destroyed the …
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