Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Insulin Independence Doctors Combine Cell Biology, Endocrinology to Eliminate Insulin Implants

According to the article, "Insulin Independence:
Doctors Combine Cell Biology, Endocrinology to Eliminate Insulin Implants" Some diabetes patients who cannot live without insulin injections now have a new option: a transplant of islet cells, which produce insulin in the body. Drawing upon advances in cell biology and endocrinology, surgeons go through a 14-hour process to isolate and purify the islet cells from a donated pancreas. While there's no guarantee the success will last, it may prevent some life-threatening situations. Dr. Paul Gores, director of pancreas and islet transplantation at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, N.C., says, "An islet cell transplant is a means of reversing diabetes in a patient who has lost their beta cells, which are the important cells within the little clusters of cells we call islets, which reside inside the pancreas, which produce insulin." Even though this treatment does not guarantee a life time success but the treatment have been making a difference in some peoples lives. For instance, CHARLOTTE, N.C. Diabetic patients whose insulin injections became part of her daily routine, now enjoying insulin independence thanks to a new type of transplant. Also Annie Anderson has a refreshing outlook on life, but that wasn't the case a few months ago. Anderson, an islet cell transplant patient says, "My mind was working, but I couldn't get words out." Anderson is describing the scene that unfolded when her diabetes caused her to slip into unconsciousness. Episodes like that are no longer a threat for her. Becasue her type 1 diabetes was corrected through an experimental cell transplant.

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