Australia's Living Cell Technologies is garnering headlines with some intriguing responses tracked in a tiny diabetes trial undertaken in Russia. Two volunteers were injected with insulin-producing pancreas cells taken from piglets. With the smallest dose, volunteers demonstrated a 25 percent reduction in their insulin requirements. CEO Dr. Paul Tan called the trial results a "breakthrough" in treating Type 1 diabetes. The key to making it work, says the company, is coating the pancreas cells with a gel that prevents them from being marked for destruction by the human immune system and allows them to express insulin. That coating process prevents the need for using immuno-suppressant therapies.
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