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Stem cell cure for type 1

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by jonniey, Jan 6, 2017.

  1. jonniey

    jonniey Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I always Read up stories that there is a stem cell cure for type 1 diabetes.....I wonder how true it is??
     
  2. catapillar

    catapillar Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    There isn't currently a stem cell cure for type one diabetes. So the stories you are reading are not true, or just someone trying to sell you something.

    Today there is no cure for type 1 diabetes.
     
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  3. SurreyDad

    SurreyDad Type 1 · Member

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  4. Copernicus

    Copernicus Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Sure I read something somewhere that stem cell might eventually lead to a cure but nothing happening yet.
     
  5. SallyEzra

    SallyEzra Type 1 · Active Member

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    I have heard a couple of people referring to close family members who had type 1 diabetes but were given a pancreas transplant & were cured. But I have not yet had the opportunity to check it out & see if there is any truth in it. Have any of you guys heard anything about pancreas transplants & cure?
     
  6. Jaylee

    Jaylee Type 1 · Expert
    Retired Moderator

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    Hi, I've heard this idea bandied about for probably the last 25/30 years? Sure I also read about it in the New Scientist..? Alas, to no avail...

    My wife came back from a hair cut a couple of years back where the hairdresser told of her husband having a kidney & pancreas transplant. But my wife was a little sketchy on the details..

    However, I do know of one member here that has had a successful pancreas transplant procedure ..
    Tagging in @Grant_Vicat .
     
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  7. Grumpy ole thing

    Grumpy ole thing Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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  8. Grant_Vicat

    Grant_Vicat Don't have diabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @SallyEzra I have just been tagged by @Jaylee as being an example of an ex Type 1, having had it from 11 months old till 4 days short of my 55th birthday. The kidney/pancreas transplant was carried out 13th-14th August 2013 and I have not had any Insulin or hypos/hypers since. It is not classed as a cure technically, but in my view it feels that way!. It does however mean that I have to take 7 immuno-suppressants daily as well as other drugs, which give me tremors in my hands. Ironically I had a check-up at the Transplant Clinic on 13th August 2018 and the very next day was told that the level of Lipase and Amylase in my blood was too high. It is a mystery at the moment because I have no pain in the pancreas, therefore ruling out pancreatitis, and I have perfect HbA1c results, indicating that rejection is unlikely. The level has come down fractionally in the last three weeks, which suggests that pancreatic cancer is also unlikely. I also know that an unfortunate lady on the forum posted last year (I think) that after 21 years her pancreas transplant had stopped working. I am due for another blood test Friday week and if there is no improvement I shall undergo a CT scan later. I can understand therefore that clinically I am not cured, and of course transplants are not routine as they are very risky undertakings. Because my kidneys started to show protein in urine back in 1973, it was not surprising that 45 years later they were in very poor condition. Oddly my cardiovascular system was in very good condition generally and therefore a pancreas transplant was offered as well. But a pancreas is a very delicate organ and it is much harder to find a suitable one. This is why I had six failed attempts before the magic No.7. I reckon that cell transplanting is probably going to be the way ahead, although I heard only today about training immune cells to fight off Leukaemia is being investigated. It would be ironic if the very same immune cells which cause Type 1 end up being retrained!
     
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  9. SallyEzra

    SallyEzra Type 1 · Active Member

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    Hi @grant_vicat , thank you so much for sharing & explaining your experience of kidney/pancreas transplants, I really appreciate it. I have learnt a lot! It sounds like you may have been through a much to achieve this ‘cure’ but I am sure you must still consider it very much worthwhile?

    And I really hope that the current investigations you have taking place all go well & ultimately confirm that everything is still as it should be with the performance of your transplants.

    From what you say, it sounds like the performance of your kidneys alongside your type 1 diabetes is what the medical teams were weighing up when they decided to recommend transplants. And I am guessing it must be a very tricky process otherwise it would be something that we would come across more frequently?.
    Many thanks again.
     
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  10. Grant_Vicat

    Grant_Vicat Don't have diabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @SallyEzra Yes, it is certainly still worthwhile, especially when I consider how my day used to start for at least 30 years. I would wake up, reach for the testing kit and then decide what to do about Insulin dosage and whether I was in a position to eat my breakfast at the usual time. I would test myself before driving a car and on bad days I would test up to 8 times if an infection had caused serious hyperglycaemia. All that, plus insulin injections, has gone, as has the worry about the possibility of violent swings in blood sugar. I was classed as a brittle diabetic from the start. As I mentioned yesterday, my kidneys started their long journey of decline 45 years ago. Five years later I started at King's College London as a student, and was therfore an outpatient (and inpatient) of one of the finest diabetes centres in the UK. Their treatment slowed the deterioration in kidney function right down. In 2000 I was referred to Addenbrooke's Hospital, Cambridge, who gave me 5 years before they thought dialysis would be necessary. From 2010 onwards I would keep getting gout in random places like the hands, the sternum, the elbow and, of course, the feet. These attacks became more frequent along with cellulitis, which is much more serious. It was this that made the Nephrology Department decide to put me on the transplant waiting list in 2012. Still no dialysis. I was booked to have peritoneal dialysis initiated on 22 August 2013. Only 8 days beforehand, this was rendered unnecessary, for which I am eternally grateful!
    Transplantation is certainly a tricky process, but it seems the pancreas is much more difficult, partly because a kidney is a much tougher organ, and also because the plumbing involved in a pancreas, especially as two arteries are involved and the tissue is much more delicate, makes it harder to find an undamaged one that fits the tissue type, and also makes it more difficult to install. Funnily enough they don't take out the old organs, but they put a kidney exactly under the left side of a pair of briefs so that it joins the femoral artery, and the replacement pancreas is the same, but on the right side. It is weird being able to feel exactly where the kidney is - much bigger than I realised! Many thanks for your benevolent message!
     
  11. LittleGreyCat

    LittleGreyCat Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    My nephew had a kidney and pancreas transplant.

    He is no longer diabetic but he is on immunosupressants for the rest of his life.

    His transplant was the result of wilfully poor control, which can be an issue for T1s as they go through their teen years (and beyond).

    I have no real feel for which is better - insulin for life or immunosupressants for life. I think insulin may have fewer potential problems.

    I am pretty sure, though, that if you have hosed your kidneys then almost anything is preferable.

    Edit: I note @Grant_Vicat seems to be coming down on the side of the immunosupressants. Shows how much I know.
     
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  12. Grant_Vicat

    Grant_Vicat Don't have diabetes · Well-Known Member

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    Hi @LittleGreyCat, I think it all depends on how well controlled the patient is! Keep well
     
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