Some monumental milestones occurred in 2016 as diabetes research further evolved.

One of the more remarkable developments was the halting of type 1 diabetes in mice for six months, while further strides were made into oral insulin and the artificial pancreas.

The low-carb diet remained a prominent discussion point within type 2 diabetes research, and there was substantial technological progress in helping people manage diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes research

Harvard University researchers made a significant breakthrough in January when they showed type 1 diabetes could be halted for six months in mice. Less than a month later, human testing began in a separate study to see if stem cells could eliminate the need for insulin injections in type 1 diabetes, while progress was made too with the developments of an insulin pill and smart insulin patch.

Type 2 diabetes research

The low-carb diet received further validation from scientists when its benefits were compared to a high-fat diet, while Newcastle University’s very low-calorie diet (VCLD) also achieved impressive results among people with type 2 diabetes.

Scientists began more experiments into beige fat, which could lead to future treatments that counteract obesity and the development of type 2 diabetes.

Artificial pancreas developments

In 2016, the artificial pancreas was tested across more clinical trials and study participants than ever before, with the device shown to help both children and adults. A key trial was announced in September when the University of Cambridge was given European Commission funding to see if the artificial pancreas could transform type 1 diabetes management in children.

Blood glucose testing devices

For years researchers have been striving to make blood glucose testing less invasive, particularly as children often find finger pricking very unpleasant. In 2016, we were shown that several research avenues are being pursued to make non-invasive testing devices more available for the diabetes community.

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