Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Cord Blood Used for Type 1 Diabetes Research

“Our primary goal is to study the ability of these cord blood derived cells to modulate a human immune system in a pre-clinical animal model,” said Dale L. Greiner, Ph.D., professor of medicine, University of Massachusetts Mass Medical School.

According to the American Diabetes Association, diabetes is the fifth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes affects more than 23.6 million Americans, or 7.8 percent of the population, and is estimated to have a total annual economic cost of $174 billion. Type 1 diabetes, which accounts for between five and ten percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes, is an autoimmune disease, generally occurring in children and young adults. Because patients with type 1 diabetes do not product insulin naturally, they must have insulin delivered by injection or a pump to help maintain their health. There is no known way to prevent type 1 diabetes.

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