Existing Treatments

The current drugs for diabetes treatment lack the desired efficacy and are unable to meet the various demands of diabetics. Limited efficacy is coupled by undesired side-effects, thereby increasing non-compliance to therapy.

The limitations of current diabetic treatments

Diet, insulin, and oral medication to lower blood glucose levels are the foundation of diabetes treatment and management. Medications for each individual with diabetes will often change during the course of the disease and gradually shift to insulin therapy.

Insulin therapy can be delivered by injection or a pump and is used for Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM) patients who are not controlled with oral medications; but this therapy has the following disadvantages:

  • Weight gain is a common side effect of insulin therapy, which is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
  • Injection of insulin causes pain and inconvenience for patients
  • Patient compliance and inconvenience of self-administering multiple daily insulin injections is also considered as disadvantage of this therapy.
  • Diabetes related complications persist
  • The most serious adverse effect of insulin therapy is hypoglycemia, resulting in a seizure, loss of consciousness, or brain damage

Insulin Depended Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM) Therapy Comparisons

THERAPY

SAFETY

EFFICACY

AVAILABILITY

ETHICS

Insulin*

  • Hypoglycemia
  • Weight gain
  • Psychological resistance
  • Proven
  • Required patient' monitor &control

Available

No issue

Cadaver donors*

Allogeneic transplant, risk for graft rejection

Proven with
Highly sensitive to recurrent T1DM autoimmune attack

Limited

No issue

Orgenesis

Under research

  • Autologous – no rejection risk
  • Not sensitive to autoimmune attack
  • Proven in pre-clinical studies
  • Proven in vivo on mice rats and pigs
  • Proven in human (75 donors) tissues

No limit – the patient is the donor!

No issue

Human embryonic Stem Cells (ESC)

Under research

  • Allogeneic transplant, risk for graft rejection
  • Oncogenic hazard – Teratomas upon implantation

Proven in mice with no reference to autoimmune attack sensitivity

Successful only in few ESC lines

Ethical controversies

 

Advances in cell differentiation understanding have initiated major R&D changes, with a resulting shift towards targeted therapies.

Cell therapies - status and comparison

THERAPY

SAFETY

EFFICACY

AVAILABILITY

ETHICS

Pancreatic islet transplantation (Cadaver donors)

Allogeneic transplant, risk for graft rejection

Proven
Highly sensitive to recurrent T1DM autoimmune attack

Limited

Each patient needs four cadaver donors

No issue

Human embryonic Stem Cells (ESC)

Under research

Allogeneic transplant, risk for graft rejection.
Oncogenic hazard – Teratomas upon implantation

Proven in mice with no reference to autoimmune attack sensitivity

Successful only in few ESC lines

Ethical controversies

 

The limitations of the current anti-diabetic drugs (World), 2008

anti-diabetic-drugs-table.gif

Beta cell replacement is one of the most promising approaches for treatment of Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM). Currently pancreas islets transplantation is the only approved cell replacement technology and it's the best available treatment for diabetics. However, it's impractical because of a shortage of donor tissue and rejection rate by the patient' immune system.

Globally the economic burden exerted by diabetes and its complications account for $230.00 billion in 2007. The United States spends around $170.00 billion for the treatment of diabetes. The disease burden for type-2 diabetes in Europe alone is estimated to be $20.00 billion a year. The healthcare expenditure towards diabetes constitutes around 10.0 per cent of the total healthcare expenditure in Europe. As the disease burden is increasing, healthcare authorities are trying to find ways to reduce the healthcare costs towards diabetes.

 


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