The insulin pump offers advantages to some people with Type 1 diabetes, freeing them from the chore of administering a number of injections every day. However, the high cost of the pump and the need for careful supervision will limit its use to wealthy patients who can count on sophisticated medical support. This article proposes the use of "beta cell therapy" in order to create surrogate insulin-producing cells. It looks at how these cells function and explores some of the limitations which must be taken into account if the use of surrogate, genetically modified insulin-secreting cells is to cure Type 1 diabetes.
beta cells, insulin, islet, transplantation, genes