Evidence Based Practice Project – Interventions for Type 1 Diabetes

This paper discusses a research conducted by various scientists with the purpose of stemming cell cure for type 1 diabetes that often affects children. Type 1 diabetes is regarded as an autoimmune metabolic condition that results in the body killing all insulin producing pancreatic ß-cells needed to regulate the glucose level in human body. According to the researchers, significant steps have been made in reversing an equivalent type 1 diabetes in mice by using transplants from the stem cells. This research implies that scientists are moving closer in finding the best cure for diabetes in children that often leads to an unending injections. The California researchers have recently reported that the above experiments were capable of replacing the damaged pancreatic cells by the disease, and are incapable of making insulin (Boseley, 2014).

The researchers also noted that lack of insulin in children reduces the body’s power to absorb sugars including the glucose from the bloodstream. The killer disease was first observed in children or young adults. However, recent research indicates that insulin injections can be used in regulating and monitoring blood sugar levels. This stem cell experiment research was also meant in finding out whether it could be possible to replace the damaged insulin producing ß-cells. However, this has always proved difficult because there is a partial regeneration of the mature ß-cells (Harvard Stem Cell Institute, 2014).

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This research also incorporated the Gladstone Institute researchers who placed much effort in collecting fibroblasts/skin cells from various laboratories mice. They then used a unique molecule ‘‘cocktail’’ in addition to reprogramming factors in transforming the cells to look like the endoderm cells. Endoderm cells are a true representation of the early embryonic cells that matures to the major organs of the body such as the pancreas. The researchers also used a different chemical cocktail in transforming the endoderm-like cells into cells that closely resembled the early pancreatic cells known as PPLCs. The primary objective of this experiment was to determine whether the PPLCs could be coaxed into mature cells, which could have a similar functionality to ß-cells capable of responding to the right chemical signals, and significantly-secretion of insulin. Furthermore, the researchers’ first experiment on the petri-dish proved that they indeed responded to the correct chemical signals (Boseley, 2014).

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The stem cells were then injected by the researchers inside mice, which were modified genetically. As a result, the amount of glucose level in animals began decreasing gradually to a point of reaching normal levels. There was an instant glucose spike when the transplanted cells were removed, implying that the hyperglycemia and the PPLCs transplantation were having a direct linkage. After the first eight weeks of transplantation, these researchers discovered that the pancreas-like cells were transformed into real thing (Boseley, 2014). It now had a full functioning ß-cells capable of secreting insulin, which developed inside the mice.

The researchers also noted that this study was among the important advances in history and was a great achievement. This is because several decades have passed without generating the human pancreatic ß-cells regardless of the much effort and time used. However, these researchers overcame this hurdle by opening the door for discovering more drugs that can be helpful in treating type 1 diabetes as well as diabetic transplantation therapy. Through this research, scientists are hopeful that they will also develop an implantation device for protecting the cells. Therefore, the ultimate pre-clinical step in developing a type 1 diabetic treatment involves the protection of immune system attack that could possibly destroy the 150 million cells, which must again be transplanted to every patient being treated (Harvard Stem Cell Institute, 2014).

Scientists also noted that using the process of cell transplantation to treat type 1 diabetes was an essential experiment because it also used cadavers cells, and needed the use of a more powerful immunosuppressive drugs that have been available to a limited number of patients. However, with experiment research, scientists are now assuring patients that the same treatment will now be available to most patients, especially if the project is successfully completed. In addition, this advancement gives hope to type 1 diabetic children since it could lead to an essential unlimited tissue supply for these patients especially those awaiting to undergo cell therapy (Harvard Stem Cell Institute, 2014).

The researchers noted that this scientific principled proof was a major success since it could one day be used in treating type 1 diabetes that often affect children. This research also marked the prospect of translating these new findings to the human system. This modern technology concerning human cells is capable of enhancing understanding on how diabetes is caused by the ß-cells inherent defects, thus bringing a much closer need for curing diabetes in children. In addition, these scientists also postulate that human embryonic stem cells has assisted for the first time in producing massive quantities of insulin that is needed for the pharmaceutical purposes as well as transplantation purposes (Boseley, 2014).

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