Type 1 Diabetes Vaccine Shows Promise in Small Trial
A new type of “reverse” vaccine for type 1 diabetes has shown some promising results in a small trial. The DNA-based vaccine is designed to switch off the part of the immune system responsible for destroying the pancreatic cells that produce insulin. Its novelty lies in the fact it does the opposite of conventional vaccines, which are designed to boost immune responses.
The researchers who carried out the trial, led by Stanford University School of Medicine in the US, write about their findings in a paper published in the 26 June online issue of Science Translational Medicine.
Richard Insel, chief scientific officer of JDRF, formerly known as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, says in a statement:
“This is the first demonstration of a DNA vaccine targeting type-1 diabetes in humans.”
Lawrence Steinman, one of the paper’s senior authors and a professor of pediatrics and of neurology and neurological sciences at Stanford, adds: