Home
 »  News
 »  Researchers Use Novel Nanoparticle Vaccine to Cure Type 1 Diabetes in Mice
Diabetes1 Headlines

Researchers Use Novel Nanoparticle Vaccine to Cure Type 1 Diabetes in Mice

Printer Friendly Version     Email this Article     Links/Reprints

NanoparticleVaccine

Researchers Use Novel Nanoparticle Vaccine to Cure Type 1 Diabetes in Mice

April 09, 2010

Source: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation


NEW YORK, April 8, 2010 -- Using a sophisticated nanotechnology-based "vaccine," researchers were able to successfully cure mice with type 1 diabetes and slow the onset of the disease in mice at risk for the disease.  The study, co-funded by the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, provides new and important insights into understanding how to stop the immune attack that causes type 1 diabetes, and could even have implications for other autoimmune diseases.

The study, conducted at the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, was published today in the online edition of the scientific journal Immunity.

The research was led by Dr. Pere Santamaria from the Julia McFarlane Diabetes Researchers Center at the University of Calgary, Alberta.  The researchers were looking to specifically stop the autoimmune response that causes type 1 diabetes without damaging the immune cells that provide protection against infections - what is called an "antigen-specific" immunotherapy.  Type 1 diabetes is caused when certain white blood cells (called T cells) mistakenly attack and destroy the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. 

Antigen-specific immunotherapies, like Dr. Santamaria's work on nanovaccines, are a priority within JDRF's Immune Therapies program.

"Essentially there is an internal tug-of-war between aggressive T-cells that want to cause the disease and weaker T cells that want to stop it from occurring," said Dr. Santamaria, who is a JDRF Scholar - a research award to academic scientists taking innovative and creative approaches to better treating and curing type 1 diabetes and its complications.

The researchers developed a unique vaccine comprised of nanoparticles, which are thousands of times smaller than the size of a cell.  These nanoparticles are coated with protein fragments - peptides - specific to type 1 diabetes that are bound to molecules (MHC molecules) that play a critical role in presenting peptides to T cells.  The nanoparticle vaccine worked by expanding the number of peptide-specific regulatory T cells that suppressed the aggressive immune attack that destroys beta cells.   The expanded peptide-specific regulatory cells shut down the autoimmune attack by preventing aggressive autoimmune cells from being stimulated by either the peptide contained in the vaccine or by any other type 1 diabetes autoantigen presented simultaneously on the same antigen presenting cell.

The research also provided an important insight into the ability to translate these findings in mice into therapeutics for people with diabetes: nanoparticles that contained human diabetes-related molecules were able to restore normal blood sugar levels in a humanized mouse model of diabetes.

According to Teodora Staeva, Ph.D., JDRF Program Director of Immune Therapies, a key finding from the Alberta study is that only the immune cells specifically focused on aggressively destroying beta cells (or, alternatively, regulating these cells) responded to the antigen-specific nanoparticle vaccine.  That means the treatment did not compromise the rest of the immune system - a key consideration for the treatment to be safe and effective in an otherwise healthy person with type 1 diabetes.  "The potential that nanoparticle vaccine therapy holds in reversing the immune attack without generally suppressing the immune system is significant," said Dr. Staeva.  "Dr. Santamaria's research has provided both insight into pathways for developing new immunotherapies and proof-of-concept of a specific therapy that exploits these pathways for preventing and reversing type 1 diabetes."

Dr. Santamaria noted that the study had implications for other autoimmune diseases beyond type 1 diabetes.  "If the paradigm on which this nanovaccine is based holds true in other chronic autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and others, nanovaccines might find general applicability in autoimmunity," he said. 

The nanoparticle vaccine technology used in the study has been licensed by Parvus Therapeutics, Inc., a biotechnology company arising from the University Technology International LP, the technology transfer and commercialization center for the University of Calgary.  Parvus Therapeutics is focused on the development and commercialization of the nanotechnology-based therapeutic platform for the potential treatment of type 1 diabetes.  

Discuss in the forums

Previous Stories

Screening for Diabetes Highly Cost Effective

New Study Says Discussing Weight Loss Encourages Weight Loss

FDA Calls for Solutions to Insulin Pump Problems

more Feature Stories


RSS
From the BLOGS
Low potassium diet
Comment By moodyrah
more
Comment
more Blogs
wake-up call for diet soda drinkers
By AmariT

Posted: Sep 3, 2014
Pretty much everything causes cancer if you take enough of it. I'm not surprised to hear there are troubles with color additives though. Red 40 is awful for you and still used in a lot of stuff. It ...

more more Forums Create a Topic
Diagnosing Diabetes in Children
Know the early signs of diabetes. This video features detailed information ...
more more Featured Videos
Cost Savings Tool
Do you know the annual cost of managing your diabetes? Would you like to find ways to reduce your costs? Calculate your total budget and identify ways to save money. You can do this in just a few minutes by entering facts about the products you use. This quick analysis will provide you with a comprehensive overview of both spending and potential savings.

Cost Savings Tool
Monitor Comparison Tools
Blood glucose monitors offer an easy way to test your blood sugar at home or on the go. Use this comparison tool as a guide to learn more about the features and benefits of your current monitor or to find a new one.
Handheld Monitor Comparison
Continuous Glucose Monitor Comparison
Advanced BMI Calculator
Ever wonder if you are at a healthy weight? Then enter your height and weight in our advanced Body Mass Index (BMI) calculator. This tool provides you with two important numbers reflecting the estimated impact of your present body weight and shape upon your overall health.
Advanced BMI Calculator
more Care Tools
 
Dr. Wayne Caputo

Dr. Wayne Caputo:

Simplifying Treatment of Diabetic Ulcers
  more
  more Heroes
  nominate a Hero
  Hero policy
Home | About Us | Press | Make a Suggestion | Content Syndication | Terms of Service | Editorial Policy | Privacy Policy
Last updated: Sep 20, 2014  ©1999- 2014 Body1 All rights reserved.