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Re: [IPk] RE: was urgent info request re: children - now cure

> Gosh Tony
> A cure within 7 years?  That sounds unbelievable (or perhaps
> I won't let myself believe it).  I guess when I was first
> diagnosed (24 yrs ago) I used to have to boil my syringes
> every night and drop tablets and urine into a test tube and
> watch it change colour.  Progress is swifter than you realise
> until you think back.  I can remember when I was allowed to
> carry my syringe (metal and glass) in a portable carrier
> immersed in methylated spirit and I did not have to boil it.
> I thought it was fantastic (actually I might have thought it
> was fantastic because of the amount of meths I was
> unwittingly injecting myself with every day!).
> I hope you are right (more so for my children than me - they
> are OK so far but it is always at the back of my mind that
> they may not be so fortunate as I).
> Bev

Well, Beverley, I belong to the same vintage! The main effect for me of
going to the loo to do these tests, was that I became a smoker very quickly,
in my school that's what the loos were for.

In 1988 I was responsible for Ireland's first artificial pancreas, which was
huge, complex and frankly dangerous. The same thing is now in a portable
format, and there are now people using them on an experimental basis in the
US. Meanwhile we have the successful islet cell programmes, with literally
hundreds of people with type 1 benefitting today. So not only is a cure on
the way, but there is a race on, to see which method can be widely
implemented first. My money is on the technology, ie pumps driven by a
long-term glucose sensor inserted under the skin. Several of these are
undergoing trials, and while I'll be very happy to wear such a device
externally, there's no reason not to place it internally, eg as the minimed
implanatable pump which contains 400 strength insulin and a battery which
lasts up to 10 years. Would anyone volunteer to swap their diabetes for a
surgical procedure every 10 years? Yep, I thought so!!

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