Thursday, June 30, 2011

Is a diabetes cure on the horizon? Dr. Brueck comments.

Thanks for joining us for another blog about health and medicine by Fort Myers plastic surgeon, Dr. Robert J. Brueck MD FACS

It’s early Sunday morning and I’m beginning my 3
rd cup of coffee.

As I am thumbing through the News Press I see an article, “Study finds 347 million diabetics worldwide.” It goes on to state that the numbers of diabetics has doubled in the last three decades. The numbers are astonishing and I’m sure you and I all know someone who has diabetes and is affected by it.

There are two types, Type 1 comes on early in childhood and is considered an autoimmune disease. The cells in the pancreas that secrete life-saving insulin are called “islets of longerhans”

One area of diabetic research is centered on how to turn off the body's immune response to prevent the destruction of the insulin producing cells. Well, an answer may be on the horizon. The study involves a “cheap” (I question, "Is anything cheap in medicine today?") generic vaccine that has been used in fighting TB. This soon hoped-to-be miracle drug is called BCG or more technically bacillus-Calmette-Guerin. Now that’s a mouthful.

A team of researchers led by Dr. Denise Fauntman found that injection of BCG in type 1 diabetics seemed to halt the immune response against the insulin producing cells. What was even more remarkable - 4 of 6 patients who had been living with the disease an average of over 15 years, saw their bodies' insulin secreting cells awakened from a long slumber. It was thought these patients' pancreases were dead.

These are only some preliminary studies on a small group of patients. Larger clinical trials will be needed and are underway. Perhaps the future will be a bit brighter for the millions suffering from diabetes.

To think this is coming from America where, according to Michael Moore, we’re only 17 or 18th in the world ranking in health care. I believe Cuba led the list. By the way, that’s where Hugo Chavez goes to get his health care. I’m sure Michael Moore has his gas-guzzling jet on the runway ready to go at a moment's notice.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Janice said...

Such a great article it was which diabetic research is centered on how to turn off the body's immune response to prevent the destruction of the insulin producing cells. In which These are only some preliminary studies on a small group of patients. Larger clinical trials will be needed and are underway.Thanks for sharing this article.

January 14, 2012 at 6:54 AM  

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