Category: Diabetes Awareness

CBP + Diabetes = Disaster

This is short and sweet and strictly to the point.

hands-talking-1311915-640x480People with diabetes on Medicare in the United States are on the front lines of a disaster: the Competitive Bidding Program (CBP) for diabetes testing supplies. Medicare thought it was a great way to save money and after a pilot program in nine test markets, gave it a thumbs up for safety and penny-pinching.

Except…. they’re wrong. It’s not safe and it’s not cost-effective and it’s killing people with diabetes, sending them to the hospital more than ever before, and costing the U.S. healthcare system (and patients) more money. However, they refuse to admit that, telling Congress that everything is hunky-dory. There is proof now showing their pants are on fire. We, as a community, need to help them put that fire out.

The Diabetes Patient Advocacy Coalition is holding a presentation on Wednesday, December 15th at 1pm Eastern with Dr. Gary Puckrein, Ph.D, CEO and President of the National Minority Quality Forum to share the results of the study (which are scary) and then discussing what needs to happen.

It’s Wednesday at 1pm Eastern and DPAC is inviting you to join. Click here and register (and it’s a Go To Webinar program, so you can watch it on your phone or computer or tablet…).

Why is it important for you to attend?

Even if you are not Medicare eligible, there are repercussions to this program. Medicaid insurance programs often follow what Medicare is doing and then… commercial insurance programs follow suit.

You will be impacted – if not now, then soon, regardless of your age.

Find out how to stop this program before it’s too late. 

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#DiabetesDivide – How to Close The Gap

sidewalk-crumble-1487848-640x480I’m at the airport, waiting to get on a flight to NYC for The Diabetes Divide: Cities, Inequality, and the Spread of The Disease event hosted by The Atlantic and underwritten by Novo Nordisk US and thoughts about the upcoming discussions have actually prevented me from sleeping soundly. Why? Because we have a divide and the solution to close the gap isn’t simple.

Here’s the description of the event:

Diabetes is a serious public health challenge: 29 million Americans have diabetes, and 86 million more are pre-diabetic. Worse, the disease disproportionately strikes racial minorities, and trends show that diabetes prevalence is growing at an alarming rate in urban areas. How do socioeconomic, racial and geographic factors shape how the epidemic is being addressed in urban communities — and perceived by the general public?

In a town hall event with community leaders, patients, public health experts and more, The Atlantic will consider the social determinants of diabetes, and what they require of the response.

The “patients” on the discussion surrounding Citizens and Diabetes are Kelly Close of Close Concerns and diaTribe and me. We’ve been paired with a physician from Mount Sinai and the VP of Healthy Lifestyles, YMCA New York. The topic will be moderated and truth? I have no idea how the conversation will unfold.

There is a divide. Culture, race, perceptions, health insurance, food deserts, and motivation all play a part in the rise of Type 2 diabetes. These are the questions that caused my insomnia:

  • How do you change a society that values convenience?
  • How do you entice someone making minimum wage to purchase “healthy” food choices when few restaurants and grocery stores offer them at a reasonable price?
  • How do you counter cultural pressures surrounding food? (Imagine a 45 year-old construction worker saying to his friends: “Hold on while I run into the bodega and grab a kale salad with chicken and an apple for lunch.”)
  • How do you test individuals for pre-diabetes when they can’t afford to go to a clinic?
  • How do you explain to the healthcare system that simply telling an individual to lose weight and get some exercise is not going to change behaviors?
  • How do you get someone to take time out of their lives to do diabetes education programs or diabetes prevention programs when they’re working two jobs to feed their family?
  • How do you tell someone to walk a half-hour each day when there is no safe place for them to walk?
  • How do you “market” diabetes in way that truly matters?
  • How do you teach children that Type 2 diabetes does not have to be an inevitability in their lifetime when the latest statistics show that 1/3 of kids and adolescents are overweight or obese and they’re not getting enough physical activity?

Cities Changing Diabetes is a project that was begun by NovoNordisk and other partners looking for solutions. They understand that it takes more than one organization to attack this issue, so they are working with healthcare, non-profits, and social services organizations to combat the rise. It’s also important to note that rural areas have their own issues. Another time, another event.

My type of diabetes was not caused by race, weight, or sedentary lifestyle. (My beta cells left the pancreas party and never came back.) Type 2 diabetes is also not caused by race, weight, or sedentary lifestyle.

I don’t believe in the “You ate too much sugar and you are lazy. That’s why you have diabetes.” These can be contributing factors, but Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic disease that can, in many cases but not all, be prevented with small changes to every day life. (And more importantly, shaming and blaming individuals with Type 2 diabetes is also a cultural issue that needs addressing.)

How do we make a difference? Good question. I’m hoping for answers at this event and ways that I can help my diabetes community become healthier – and maybe prevent the community from growing larger. We’re a great group of people, but I’d like to keep it as exclusive as possible. The cost to enter this club is pretty expensive.

If you want to watch the event, you can register here. (You can see me be nervous live!)

 

#LaceUp4Diabetes – I'm Giving Away These Sweet Laces, Too!

unnamed-5I’m lazy. There. I said it. My cardiologist even told me: “You’re lazy.” (I like medical professionals who don’t beat around the bush.)

I need more exercise. O.K., I need to starting doing some exercise.

Ironically, Novo Nordisk contacted me a few days after my doctor’s appointment and asked me if I would participate in their #LaceUp4Diabetes campaign to show how we can take steps to reduce the risk of diabetes (or in my case, reduce my laziness and my blood glucose levels at the same time!). Of course, I said: Shoelaces?! Count me in!

I’ve got five extra sets of laces and I want to send them to five lucky random people within the next few days, so they can participate in the #LaceUp4Diabetes campaign on World Diabetes Day (November 14th…)

Here’s how you can get these sweet (yep, pun intended) laces:

Take a picture of you in your sneakers. (Points for creativity, you know! Think outside the box… or the sneakers in this case. Please do wear clothes.) Then, by Monday, November 9, 2015 at 5pm:

  • Instagram the pic using the #LaceUp4Diabetes as a hashtag and theperfectdblog in the caption (this way I’ll know it was meant for this giveaway!)
  • Facebook the pic using the #LaceUp4Diabetes as a hashtag and upload it to ThePerfectD’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/ThePerfectD What? You aren’t a fan of this page yet? All the cool kids are fans. Come jump off a bridge with us!
  • Tweet the pic using the #LaceUp4Diabetes as a hostage and mentioning @theperfectdblog in the tweet. Don’t follow me yet? Follow me. I’ll lead you down the primrose path or the yellow brick road or the rabbit hole, but I promise it will be fun!

I’ll select five lucky people based on creativity and ingenuity and the results from the swimsuit competition.  

I’ll announce the crazy people who participated and won on Tuesday, November 10th.

#LaceUp4Diabetes – I’m Giving Away These Sweet Laces, Too!If you’re selected, I’ll ask for your email and mail address and I’ll ship these laces out to you ASAP so you can have them by November 14, 2015.

You don’t have to have diabetes to participate. You just have to want to help take a single step towards diabetes awareness. 

As for me, I’m going to take a step. I’m joining a gym and will make it a priority to work out three days a week, even when I’m traveling. I’m packing my sneakers with the laces that remind me that I have the power to help myself…

Disclosure: Novo Nordisk sent me six pairs of shoelaces with no instructions. I’m doing this giveaway of my own free will and sending these to five people (because I kept a pair and laced them up on my sneaks…) of my own money (which I wish was free). They didn’t ask me to write about this. They didn’t ask me to share anything. We are a community. Sharing and helping and supporting is what we do. 

If you want to find out if you’re at risk of diabetes: AskScreenKnow.com

If you want to get a personalized support program for people who live with diabetes – and their caregivers: Cornerstones4Care.com

If you want to learn more about Novo Nordisk: novonordisk-us.com

Take a step, take a photo, win shoelaces. Go!

 

The Teal Pumpkin Project + Diabetes

TPPshare1Diabetes can be a drag around Halloween. Back in “the day” (I can say that, right? 32 years ago is “the day” for me.), Halloween meant ignoring the call of the candy that was pretty much verboten back then. (Excitement was that 1/2 cup of vanilla ice cream for special occasions. Halloween wasn’t a special occasion.) There weren’t any handy-dandy lists of bite-sized candy carb counts like there are now.

Very few houses on my Halloween trick-or-treating route (although after I was diagnosed, I was almost too old to trick/treat) gave out anything but candy – I got a spool of floss one time. Oooh. Not cool.

The Teal Pumpkin Project™ raises awareness of food allergies and promotes inclusion of all trick-or-treaters throughout the Halloween season. I’m all for it, because let’s be real: it’s not just kids with diabetes that make Halloween a nightmare for parents. It’s kids with food allergies and kids with celiac disease.

Launched as a national campaign by Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) in 2014, over 100,000 households in the United States are committed to offering non-food items to little ghouls and goblins. I’m going to participate this year and you can, too.

How do you participate?

1, Go here: The Teal Pumpkin Project™ website. 

2. Download a pre-made sign to put on your door (or if you’re fancy, a poster) that lets people know you are offering non-food items as treats. (You can click on these images and go directly to the download page for these signs.)

tppprintposterthumbtppprintposterthumb2

Note: You can STILL OFFER CANDY. I know that some people are just hard wired to want to offer candy (And truth? Some Halloween candy gets purchased and put to use for low blood sugars in my house.)

3. You can paint a teal pumpkin to place outside your home. (I used this an excuse to go to Michael’s and get all crafty.) We painted pumpkins yesterday with neighbors and our kids, talking about why we are doing this with our four-year-olds.

4. You can share the information with your neighbors and get them involved. You can put your home on a “food allergy” crowdsourced map so people in your area can show they are offering non-food items.

5. On Halloween, offer non-food items to trick-or-treaters (or give them options…).

What are non-food items?

  • Glow sticks, bracelets, or necklaces
  • Pencils, pens, crayons or markers
  • Bubbles
  • Halloween erasers or pencil toppers
  • Mini Slinkies
  • Whistles, kazoos, or noisemakers
  • Bouncy balls
  • Finger puppets or novelty toys
  • Coins
  • Spider rings
  • Vampire fangs
  • Mini notepads
  • Playing cards
  • Bookmarks
  • Stickers
  • Stencils

If you come to my house, you’ll get glow in the dark bracelets and glow in the dark rings. (I might have purchased WAY more than we need. I’ll be glowing in November. You can have one.)

So join me in participating in this project… and help make Halloween a little more fun and a little less scary for all of us.

“The TEAL PUMPKIN PROJECT and the Teal Pumpkin Image are trademarks of Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE).”

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Dear JDCA (Juvenile #Diabetes Cure Alliance) Part Two

hands-talking-1311915-640x480If you have no idea what’s going on, please read Dear JDCA Part One.

It will bring you up to speed (as quickly as 2500 words can), giving you the information regarding what the Juvenile Diabetes Cure Alliance thinks are the most likely “practical cures” for people with Type 1 diabetes and why their petition demanding JDRF and ADA to commit 30% of donations to “cure research” isn’t doing anything to help the diabetes community except cause deep fractures amongst us.

Part One covered the transplantation “practical cures” that JDCA believes we should all support with the intent to have these cures available by 2025.

Part Two below covers the devices and the immune system manipulation options they highlight.

Quick Recap

The Juvenile Diabetes Care Alliance states that they want a “practical cure” by 2025. JDCA’s Four categories of a “practical cure”:

  • Islet cell transplantation
  • A device that mimics the pancreas
  • Glucose-responsive insulin (“smart insulin”) ***Please note that none of the potential practical cures are of this type.***
  • Modification of the immune system (blocking, balancing, and/or retraining)

Every year, JDCA issues a report that tells potential donors which “practical cures” are more likely to pull ahead. Here are the 2014 “Potential Practical Cure Solutions,” found in the JDCA State of the Cure report. (2015 hasn’t been published yet, but expect it in the fall as in previous years).

For each,  I will provide you the basic info into what it is, where this is in terms of “potential” release into the community and who is funding it.

JDCA’s 2014 Potential Practical Cure Solutions (Part 2)

Device

Bionic Pancreas (iLet)

Boston University

– Boston, MA

What it is: 

Engineers from Boston University have developed a bionic pancreas system that uses continuous glucose monitoring along with subcutaneous delivery of both rapid-acting insulin (to lower blood glucose) and glucagon (to raise blood glucose) as directed by a computer algorithm. The bionic pancreas automatically makes a new decision about insulin and glucagon dosing every five minutes; that’s 288 decisions per day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year. (Artificialpancreas.org)

Where it is in the pipeline of “practical cure”:

According to Clinical Trials.gov, Phase III clinical trials will begin soon, with an estimated completion date of August, 2016. 80 participants will be in this trial. All clinical trials to this date have had favorable results.

If the pipeline is followed, commercialization is to be expected by 2018. The major issues will be funding and the FDA approval of stable glucagon provided by Xeris Pharmaceuticals.

 

Who is funding this “practical cure”?

Drs. Damiano and Russell do not work for a privately funded company. They work for universities. Funding is obtained through NIH grants and generous donations from private donors. JDRF did fund a portion of this research. 

There is currently no investment funding for future commercial agreement. Funding is being obtained through donations made through Boston University and Massachusetts General Hospital, private grants, and potentially NIH.

This is one “potential cure” that is fueled by direct donations from the general public.

If you are interested in donating to the Bionic Pancreas (iLet), you can do so here. 

If you want to learn more about the iLet, click here.


Modification of the immune system

BCG

Faustman Labs (Massachusetts General Hospital)

-Boston, MA

What it is: 

The BCG Human Clinical Trial Program is testing Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG), an inexpensive generic drug, as a treatment for advanced type 1 diabetes.

…current research focuses on discovering and developing new treatments for type 1 diabetes and other autoimmune diseases, including Crohn’s disease, lupus, scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjögren’s syndrome, and multiple sclerosis. (Faustman Lab website)

Where it is in the pipeline of “practical cure”:

A Phase II clinical trial which will last five years is being launched.

In the phase I clinical trial, which was published in the August 8, 2012, issue of PLOS Medicine, two injections of BCG spaced four weeks apart led to temporary elimination of diabetes-causing T cells and provided evidence of a small, transient return of insulin secretion. The phase II clinical study will include more frequent dosing over a longer time period to determine the potential of repeat BCG vaccination to ameliorate the autoimmune state and improve clinical parameters such as HbA1c, a marker of average blood sugar control. (Eureka Alert)

Here is the Clinical Trials.gov posting for the Phase II Clinical Trial. Please note that this is a double blinded trial. Neither the investigator nor the participant will know if they are being administered the BCG vaccine or saline injections over 5 years. 150 participants will be selected.

Earliest results will be in 2020. Please also be aware that a Phase III Clinical Trial must be conducted after successful results are shown, which can delay commercialization by several years if the Phase II Clinical Trial results show promise.

Who is funding this “practical cure”?

The Lee Iacocca Foundation gave Faustman Labs $10 million dollars initial funding for her Phase I trials and has also committed funding to Phase II trials. Faustman Labs estimates that Phase II trials will cost $25.2 million dollars.

This is one “potential cure” that is fueled by direct donations from the general public.

If you are interested in donating to Faustman Labs, click here. 

Note: Mike Hoskins of DiabetesMine/Healthline did a recent interview with Dr. Denise Faustman in March, 2015. It’s an important read.  During the interview, Dr. Faustman mentions that neither JDRF or Helmsley Charitable Trust has funded her, but that NIH, private supporters, Lee Ioacocca and others have chosen her research as their “practical cure.”


TOL-3021

Tolerion, Inc.

-Portola Valley, CA

What it is: 

TOL-3021, is a novel reverse vaccine that induces tolerance to the type 1 diabetes specific auto antigen proinsulin and thereby reduces disease activity.

Unlike conventional vaccines, which act to stimulate the immune system, the reverse vaccine TOL-3021 is designed to selectively suppress specific elements of the immune system that are inappropriately activated in type 1 diabetes. TOL-3021 contains an engineered DNA plasmid that expresses proinsulin, which is associated with the autoimmune-caused destruction characterizing type 1 diabetes.(Tolerion website)

Where it is in the pipeline of “practical cure”:

In 2013, a press release regarding TOL-3021 stated:

The Phase 2 study results reported in today’s edition of Science Translational Medicine1 demonstrated that TOL-3021 preserved pancreatic beta-cell function while reducing destructive disease-specific T-cell activity in patients with type 1 diabetes.

These promising Phase 2 data indicate that TOL-3021 may stop the destruction of pancreatic beta cells and improve the long-term outlook for patients with type 1 diabetes, even in adults with long-established disease. Based on these results, we are eager to test TOL-3021 in a larger trial with longer dosing beyond 12 weeks, and to assess whether it might slow or stop disease progression entirely in younger patients when administered before large numbers of beta calls have been destroyed.

Nothing in regards to clinical trials has been published since 2013. In 2013, an article regarding the Stanford researchers who conducted this trial stated:

There are caveats with the trial. For one, the vaccine must be studied in more humans and is years away from being considered for Food and Drug Administration approval. What’s more, in the study, the vaccine’s benefits tailed off a few weeks after its 12-week dosing schedule was stopped.

I have yet to find another announcement regarding a Phase III clinical trial or anything regarding this “practical cure” since 2013. 

Who is funding this “practical cure”?

Dr. Lawrence Steinman, the Stanford researcher who, along with other researchers involved with this project, founded Tolerion. Here’s what he had to say regarding funding:

I can’t give enough praise to Bayhill’s investors, the JDRF (formerly the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) and well-known VCs on Sand Hill Road and the Bay Area.

(When I dug a little deeper, I found that the original name of this drug was BHT-3021 and the trial was funded by… JDRF in collaboration with Bayhill Therapeutics.)

Rights to the reverse vaccine technology and associated product pipeline have been licensed to Tolerion by Stanford University.

There is no public donation funding being requested.


Cyclosporine Omeprazole/Lansoprazole

Perle Bioscience

-Charleston, NC

What it is: 

Cyclosporine is a well-known immunosuppressant given as an anti-rejection medication after organ transplantation and for treatment of RA (rheumatoid arthritis) or psoriasis.

Lansoprazole is a proton-pump inhibitor. You might know it by its brand name: Prevacid.Omeprazole is also a proton-pump inhibitor. (Brand name: Prilosec.) It decreases the amount of acid in the stomach and is commonly used in treating heartburn and GERD (reflux).

In 2013, Chris Leach of Insulin Nation wrote an incredibly informative article about Perle Bioscience and their “practical cure”.  He gave a better overview than I ever could about this so I encourage you to read his work.

Where it is in the pipeline of “practical cure”:

On June 23, 2015, Perle Bioscience announced that a Stage 3 clinical trial was beginning with their drug combination – PRL001. Except…

This Phase III clinical trial is not for individuals with long-standing Type 1 diabetes. According to the ClinicalTrial.gov information, this trial is for newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetics aged 10 – 20 years old. The trials will not be conducted in the U.S.

For those with diabetes diagnosed more than 12 weeks ago, the only clinical trial data listed on ClinicalTrial.gov, there is simply a “This study is not yet open for participant recruitment.” It’s last update was October 3, 2013.

Perle Bioscience’s website gives this information regarding its pipeline:

PRL001

PRL001 consists of the combination of two previously approved therapeutic agents, each yielding their specific response on the body. In Vivo animal studies, the first product inside of PRL001 causes the regeneration of the patients own insulin producing pancreatic beta cells to start growing again. The second part of PRL001 lowers the body ability from re-attacking the newly formed insulin producing cells to essentially put the pancreas back to how it was functioning prior to diabetes. Both agents are taken orally and no injections are needed for this product. Perle Bioscience, Inc. holds the issued and pending US and IPC patents (see below for patents) for the new use of these agents in treating diabetes. PRL001 is starting multi-center Phase 3 human trials in early 2015.

PRL002

PRL002 is a novel peptide developed by Perle Bioscience, Inc., where in current in vitro and in vivo studies, is showing signs of high levels of regeneration of insulin producing pancreatic cells. PRL002 is made up of our novel Beta Regeneration Agent for Diabetes (BRAD) peptides. Currently PRL002 is in animal trials with the hope to have an IND application to the FDA in early 2016. Our hope is that PRL002 will be used for both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Please sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date on our progress (signup from the bottom of any page).

There is no mention of the Phase III clinical trial for individuals with “existing Type 1 diabetes” on Perle Bioscience’s website. 

Who is funding this “practical cure”?

According to Motley Fool:

Perle is a privately held company, so no investments can be made here as of yet.


Tianhe Stem Cell Biotechnologies

Stem Cell Educator Therapy

-China

What it is: 

“Stem Cell Educator therapy” is the innovative technology developed by Dr. Yong Zhao that uses stem cells drawn from human cord blood to targets autoimmune diseases. Currently, Tianhe is focusing on the application of Stem Cell Educator therapy in diabetes. Our clinical data provide powerful evidence that Stem Cell Educator therapy can balance the immune system and lead to the regeneration of islet beta cells and improve metabolic control in long-standing diabetic subjects. This groundbreaking technology is taking steps towards the ultimate cure of diabetes and revolutionizing the treatment of other autoimmune-related diseases.(Tianhe website.)

Where it is in the pipeline of “practical cure”:

Clinical Trials.gov gives this information: Stem Cell Educator Therapy in Type 1 Diabetes was last updated in November, 2013 and is still stating that it is recruiting participants in China and Spain. Expected completion was September, 2014.

No additional information regarding trials and a “practical cure” has been listed on the Tianhe website. The latest clinical trial information discusses Stem Cell Educator Therapy for hair regrowth in Alopecia Areata patients. (April 22, 2015)

Who is funding this “practical cure”?

The Chinese government, according to the sponsorship information provided on Clinical Trials.gov. The Tianhe website is looking for investors, stating this as an enticement:

A huge marketing opportunity due to the global prevalence of diabetes: For instance, the total number of Americans living with diabetes will increase by 64% in 2025. Annual Medicare cost will increase by 72%, with $514 billion/year (72nd ADA report).

There is no request from the general public for donations.


Previous JDCA “Practical Cures”

file-1-3-1237622-640x640JDCA has published three reports, talking about the “cure” and which projects they believe fall under the guidelines. I’ve focused on the 2014 report (which is the latest), but what about 2013? 2012? (They began in 2011.)

2013

In 2013, here’s what they said were practical cures paths, because they were in human trials:

Still going…

Diabecell (Phase II) – I’ve listed the latest in Part 1.

Tianhe Stem Cell Educator Therapy (Phase II) – I’ve listed the latest above.

BCG (Phase II recruiting) – I’ve listed the latest above.

ViaCyte (Phase I) – I’ve listed the latest in Part 1.

Off the list in 2014…

Sitagliptin/Lansoprazole (Phase II) Note: collaborator listed on ClinicalTrials.gov is JDRF. Status listed now as “The recruitment status of this study is unknown because the information has not been verified recently. )

Monolayer Cellular Device (Phase 1) According to ClinicalTrials.gov, this study is still recruiting patients for one location in Belgium, but JDCA has dropped it from the 2014 list of practical cures.

2012

In 2012, here’s what they said were practical cures paths:

Still going…

Diabecell (Phase II) – I’ve listed the latest in Part 1.

BCG (Phase II recruiting) – I’ve listed the latest above.

Off the list in 2013 and 2014…

Sitagliptin/Lansoprazole

Monolayer Cellular Device

ATG/GCSF – This Phase II clinical trial  is no longer recruiting patients but is active (meaning they got enough participants). The work is still ongoing, but if you read the criteria, it was modified to say that the participants must have been diagnosed between 1 and 2 years before the start of the study, taking out the possibility for those with long-standing Type 1 to participate. The trial is called: Reversing Type 1 Diabetes After it is Established and is being run by University of Florida with grants from the Helmsley Charitable Trust and Genzyme.


My Scorecard for 2014 Practical Cures

Based on what JDCA says are “practical cures” and what I’ve researched, here is the likelihood that they will become commercially available by JDCA’s 2025 “deadline.”

Transplantation

VIACYTE – Phase I/II clinical trial right now. Estimated commercialization date of this product if Phase I/II is successful, a Phase III trial is conducted and successful and proceeds to FDA approval? Unlikely by 2025.  
DIABECELL – Phase I/IIa completed. No Phase III clinical trials listed in ClinicalTrials.gov. Estimated commercialization date of this product if there is a Phase III trial and it proceeds to FDA approval? Unlikely by 2025.
ßAIR BIO-ARTIFICIAL PANCREAS – Phase I/II clinical trial right now. Estimated commercialization date of this product if Phase I/II is successful, Phase III happens and is successful and proceeds to FDA approval? Unlikely by 2025.

Device

BIONIC PANCREAS (iLET) – Phase I/II completed and Phase III beginning soon. Estimated commercialization date of this product if  Phase III proceeds to FDA approval and Xeris Pharmaceuticals gets FDA approval for stable glucagon? Likely by 2018 (2019 if you’re hedging bets.).

Modification of the Immune System

BCG – Phase II clinical trial being launched, lasting five years. Estimated commercialization date of this product if Phase II and Phase III is successful, proceeding to FDA approval? Unlikely by 2025.
TOL-3021 – Phase II clinical trial completed, with results showing the benefits did not last longer than the 12 week dosing period. There are no Phase III clinical trials list. Unlikely by 2025.
CYCLOSPORINE/LANSOPRAZOLE – Phase II completed. No clinical Phase III clinical trial listed on clinicaltrials.gov for patients with existing Type 1 diabetes. Unlikely by 2025.
STEM CELL EDUCATOR THERAPY – Phase II clinical trial listed in 2013 and still recruiting. Estimated commercialization date of this product if Phase I/II is successful, a Phase III trial is conducted and successful and proceeds to FDA approval? Unlikely by 2025.  

Conclusion to this LONG Part 2…

paper-numbers-1236363-639x426What one organization thinks is a  cure isn’t always a cure to you. It’s easy for JDCA call out an organization for not doing enough for what they think is “cure research.”
It’s much more difficult to do so when you realize that everyone has a different (and in JDCA’s reports, showing an ever changing) idea of what a “practical cure” would mean. 
What is practical in 2012, 2013, and 2014 may not be practical in 2015. JDCA kept mentioning DRI’s BioHub, but never put it on the top list of their “practical cures,” but yesterday’s announcement that the first human subject to be implanted with the BioHub is off insulin. (Time will tell is this is successful in the long-term, but JDCA didn’t consider this a donation priority.)
What about “smart insulin?” What about the other closed loop AP trials? What about…. something we haven’t thought of yet? We don’t know what the young researchers in five years will present to major diabetes organizations (or the general public). Seed money comes from these large diabetes non-profits to new researchers who seek out grants to get them off the ground. What happens to these researchers if they don’t get the seed money?
Nothing. Literally. 
JDCA is cherry-picking (and finger pointing, but to what end remains to be seen). It’s their right and I’ve learned a lot about the different avenues to a “practical cure. ” (Hat tip to JDCA for sending me down the rabbit hole. I’m certainly better educated for it.)
We are ALL cherry-picking. It’s our right. But do it by doing the research and making smart, educated choices.
We are all in this together, despite differences in opinions about what a cure entails, who is going to provide it, and who should fund it. And most importantly, who speaks for you. (Here’s a hint… it’s not me or JDCA.) It’s my hope that you learned something about “cure research” and where YOU can get your information about cure pipelines so you can speak for yourself.
Thank you for reading all the way to the end.