Loss of vision due to retinopathy is one of the long-term and potentially disabling complications of diabetes. A degenerative disorder, it sneaks up gradually. But what triggers diabetic retinopathy? University of Minnesota neuroscientist Eric Newman, Ph.D., who has studied the retina for more than 35 years, thinks he knows, and he's now testing a simple means that could combat it.
Results tagged “Discoveries in Diabetes”
For decades, researchers have focused much of their energy on minimizing the impact of diabetes. Because people with diabetes do not have functioning pancreas islet cells--essential for producing the insulin our bodies need--physicians and scientists have found ways to help them manage their blood sugar levels through lifestyle changes, medications, and insulin injections.
But Jakub Tolar, M.D., Ph.D., director of the University of Minnesota's Stem Cell Institute, wants to think much bigger. He doesn't just want to make it easier for patients to live with their diabetes; he wants to cure them of it.
He has toured 47 states and 23 countries to increase awareness of cystic fibrosis (CF)--a genetic disorder that causes mucus to build up and clog some organs of the body, primarily the lungs--and he gets hugs everywhere he goes. This furry advocate is Burke P. Bear, a cuddly teddy bear named in honor of Burke P. Derr, who died two days before his 19th birthday in 1997 from complications of CF.
Research collaborators working with the University of Minnesota and University of Arizona embarked on a unique experiment in August. A donor pancreas, chaperoned by a graduate student, was fl own by commercial jet from Minneapolis to Tucson, Arizona. The goal: to see if a new organ preservation technique could extend the life of the donor pancreas. It did.
The University of Minnesota recently performed its 8,000th kidney transplant-which coincided with the 50-year anniversary of Minnesota’s fi rstever kidney transplant, also performed at the U of M. In the past half century, the University has established its place as a world leader in solid organ transplant.