Stephen Gitelman, MD, leads clinical trials of new treatments for the UCSF, describes new treatment for diabetes as a honeymoon that should never end. The honeymoon he refers to is the initial period after diagnosis. At this point in the disease remaining beta-cells are still functioning well. During this ‘honeymoon’ blood sugars are easier to control, and there is less chance of hypoglycemia or other problems involving blood-sugar levels. He proposes a ‘marriage’ so to say between the newly diagnosed and new treatments that can keep the disease in its honeymoon stage forever.

The article, New Diabetes Treatments Aim for Never-Ending Honeymoon, can be found at the website. It describes Gitelman’s goals in his new diabetes treatment.  In the beginning of the disease the beta cells are still functioning, just enough to keep blood sugar within range. So, he aims to keep these remaining beta cells functioning with new treatment for diabetes.


Diabetes New Treatment for Antibodies


Gitelman’s new treatment for diabetes aims to target immune cells that attack beta cells. The former director of the UCSF Diabetes Center, Jeffrey Bluestone, PHD, was first to develop anti-CD3 antibodies a decade ago. The CD3 protein is a marker found on the T cells that attack beta cells. Gitelman and other clinical investigators have used this information to develop a new treatment of diabetes called anti-thymocyteglobuling (ATG).

With this new treatment in diabetes, researchers are hoping that the antibody will knock out destructive T cells while permitting non-destructive T cells to take their place. This new diabetes treatment has already been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a treatment for preventing organ rejection in kidney transplant patients and for the use in other autoimmune diseases. Thymoglobulin is the brand name of this possible new treatment for diabetes.

There is also a third clinical trial set in which Thymoglobulin will be combined with the granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (G-CSF) treatment used for cancer patients. G-CSF causes immature cells in bone marrow to mature and activate. In studies performed on mice, the combinations of these two treatments seem to be much more effective than Thymoglobulin treatment alone. This could become a valuable new treatment for diabetes type-2. The article states that this clinical trial is open for individual that are between the ages of 16 to 45 have been diagnosed within the last two years.