New methods for early detection may lead to better care
Because inflammation associated with diabetes is difficult to detect, investigators previously have lacked sufficient methods sensitive enough to detect its onset. To overcome this, investigators in the Max McGee National Research Center for Juvenile Diabetes at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin created a blood test for sensitive detection of the inflammation associated with diabetes.
Based on these tests, diabetes may be detected as early as six years before onset - leaving an open window for early intervention.
Anakinra, a drug commonly used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, currently is being tested in adult trials for effectiveness in treating diabetes. Using the test described above, investigators are collaborating with adult centers to determine if the drug reduces the inflammation associated with diabetes. The immediate goal is to open up the Anakinra trial to children. The long-term goal is to monitor siblings at risk and intervene to prevent diabetes.