With an aging population, obesity on the rise, and sedentary lifestyles becoming increasingly common, diabetes has grown into a major health concern in the U.S. and worldwide. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 29.1 million people or 9.3% of the U.S. population has diabetes, including an estimated 8.1 million who are undiagnosed. According to the American Diabetes Association, the 2012 cost of this disease in the U.S. was “$245 billion per annum or approximately $500,000 every minute.”
In a historic achievement, the Diabetes Research Institute a Center of Excellence at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, announced the first patient in its clinical trial had stopped insulin injections after the implantation of islet cells within a biological scaffold. Wendy Peacock, the 43 year old patient from San Antonio, received the minimally invasive procedure on August 18, 2015, and is now producing her own insulin for the first time since the age of 17.
Given the growing promise of regenerative medicine, the following companies are also exploring cell-based treatments for diabetes. [Read more…]