by Dennis Mann
FRIDAY, Jan. 13, 2023 (HealthDay News) — An artificial pancreas has long been considered the holy grail for people with type 1 diabetes, and new research suggests that a more convenient version of the technology may be a better option for millions of those people. Can help people who are suffering from type 1 diabetes. 2 Diabetes.
Type 2 is the more common form of diabetes, and is closely linked to obesity.
The pancreas produces insulin, the hormone that helps blood sugar (or glucose) enter cells to be used as energy.People with type 1 diabetes make too little insulin. When insulin is in short supply, glucose builds up, causing extreme fatigue, blurred vision, weight loss, and confusion. Some people with type 2 diabetes also need to take daily insulin to keep their blood sugar under control.
Enter the artificial pancreas, an automated insulin delivery system that mimics the function of the pancreas.
“About 20% to 30% of people with type 2 diabetes use insulin therapy to manage their diabetes, and we have shown that this method of delivering insulin with a closed-loop system is more effective than their current insulin injections when glucose is reached. is a far more effective target,” said study author Dr. said Charlotte Boughton, a clinical lecturer at the University of Cambridge in England.
With closed-loop systems for type 1 diabetes, the user enters information about the timing and size of their meals several times a day, but insulin delivery is automated between meals and overnight. In contrast, the new system for people with type 2 diabetes is a completely closed loop. This means that users do not need to enter any information.
It was developed using over-the-counter devices, including an off-the-shelf glucose monitor and an insulin pump, with an app called CamAPS HX. This software predicts how much insulin is needed to keep blood sugar levels in the target range. Boughton said people wear the blood sugar sensor and insulin pump and carry a smartphone with them to see how the system works.
“This fully automated closed-loop system is a safer and more effective way for people with type 2 diabetes to manage their glucose levels than the current standard treatment with insulin.”
How effective was it? The investigators found that when people with type 2 diabetes used the new system, they spent twice as long with glucose levels in the target range compared to testing blood sugar and giving themselves insulin shots.
Boughton said this equates to an extra eight hours a day and was achieved without increasing the risk of dangerously low glucose levels.
“We hypothesize that the improvements in glucose control we observed may reduce the risk of complications of diabetes such as eye disease, kidney disease, and amputation, but longer-term follow-up studies are needed to investigate this further,” he said.
The new study involved 26 people with type 2 diabetes. One group used an artificial pancreas for eight weeks and then switched to multiple daily insulin injections. Others were treated in the reverse order.
On average, people using the artificial pancreas were within their target blood sugar range two-thirds of the time. This is twice as common with standard insulin shots, according to the report.
What’s more, researchers found that people given insulin via shots spent two-thirds of their time with high glucose levels, compared to 33% when using an artificial pancreas.
The system also helped reduce levels of glycated hemoglobin, or HbA1c, which provides a snapshot of blood sugar levels over time.
No one in the study experienced dangerously low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia, which can happen when the device doesn’t keep blood sugar levels in the target range.
And then there’s the improved quality of life that comes with not needing to constantly check blood sugar levels, inject insulin, or take medication. Nine out of 10 participants said they spent less time managing their diabetes when they used the artificial pancreas.
This technology could be game-changing for millions of people.
“The number of people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is increasing globally, and people are diagnosed at a younger age, so they are living with type 2 diabetes longer,” Boughton said. “Anyone with type 2 diabetes who struggles to keep glucose levels where they need to be with insulin injections could benefit from this system.”
The equipment costs more than standard insulin injection and glucose testing kits.
“If closed-loop systems can reduce the risk of very costly diabetes complications in the long term – such as the need for dialysis, visual loss and amputation – then they may be cost-effective. But longer follow-up is needed to test this. A larger study with is needed,” Boughton insisted.
Researchers have previously shown that an artificial pancreas powered by a similar algorithm is effective for people with type 1 diabetes and have also tested the system in people with type 2 diabetes who require kidney dialysis.
Using these systems can be fairly simple: You wear the devices, load them with insulin and go about your daily routine, says Dr. John Buse explained.
“There is no such device available in the US or anywhere in the world to my knowledge,” said Basse, who reviewed the new study.
He said the cost of similar screening techniques is about $10,000 per year for equipment, supplies, insulin and provider support. ,[They cost] With acquisition costs higher in the first year and lower over time,” he explained.
More research is needed before this device is ready for prime time, but the promise is real, just added.
“Keeping glucose within a relatively narrow range holds promise for reducing the long-term complications of diabetes — blindness, kidney failure, amputations, heart attack, stroke, as well as the risk of urgent hospitalizations related to high or low glucose.” reducing risk. In the form of potentially lower risk of infection, cognitive decline, and other important issues common in diabetes,” he said.
The findings were published online on 11 January Nature Cure.
Learn more about the artificial pancreas at the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
Sources: Charlotte Boughton, PhD, Clinical Lecturer, University of Cambridge, UK; John Buse, MD, PhD, professor of medicine, director, Diabetes Center and NC Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; naturopathy, January 11, 2023, online