6/24/2013 8:08:42 AM
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A decade of work by scientists to create an artificial pancreas that will independently control insulin levels in people with Type 1 diabetes took a leap forward in research from Medtronic Inc. (MDT) and Johnson & Johnson. Medical pumps developed by the two companies were shown in separate studies this weekend at the American Diabetes Association meeting in Chicago to successfully sense changes in blood sugar levels and adjust insulin delivery accordingly. Type 1 diabetes occurs when insulin-releasing beta cells in the pancreas are destroyed. Patients must test their blood repeatedly with finger sticks or a glucose monitor, then inject themselves with the hormone using a needle or pump to control blood sugar. The emerging artificial pancreas technology seeks to link a glucose monitor, or sensor, to a pump that delivers insulin on its own as needed, mimicking a healthy pancreas.
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