Could a capsule of insulin crystals a day stop the development of type 1 diabetes? There are indications that this could be the case. In the international TrialNet study*, which follows relatives of individuals with type 1 diabetes, researchers are investigating whether oral insulin could prevent or delay the disease.
Type 1 diabetes is the autoimmune form of diabetes, in which the patients’ insulin-producing beta cells are destroyed by their own immune system.
“We know that if a person has two autoantibodies and one of them is against insulin, there is a 50 per cent risk that they will develop type 1 diabetes within five years. It doesn’t matter how old you are”, says Åke Lernmark, Professor of Experimental Diabetes Research at Lund University in Sweden.