New findings indicate the blood contained in umbilical cords could preserve insulin production amongst children who have freshly been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. The results, from a small study piloted in American, were presented at ADA (American Diabetes Association) Scientific Sessions in Chicago .
Researchers from the University of Florida aimed to discover whether patients could use their own cord blood cells to hinder the autoimmune attack on the pancreas.
One paediatric endocrinologist, Michael Haller, reportedly commented: “This is the first attempt at using cord blood as a potential therapy for type 1 diabetes. We hope these cells can either lessen the immune system’s attack on the pancreas or possibly introduce stem cells that can differentiate into insulin-producing cells.”
He reportedly continued: “While this is a relatively small study we can confidently say this is safe, and we have seen metabolic and immunologic changes to suggest there may be benefit . It’s not curing diabetes, but this is a first step to help us learn more and get us moving in the right direction.”

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