Cell therapy used to cure diabetes

A UK man who has suffered from diabetes for more than 30 years has had the condition reversed by cell transplant surgery.

The man, aged 61, suffered from Type 1 diabetes and required daily insulin injections to control it until he was given injections of insulin-producing pancratic ‘islet’ cells from dead donors.

Doctors at London’s King’s College Hospital injected the cells into his liver using keyhole surgery. The new cells replaced his own mal-fuctioning cells in the pancreas and he no longer needs to take insulin.

Professor Stephanie Amiel, a consultant in diabetes at King’s, said: “The implications for the future are enormous. Eventually this could mean the end of insulin dependence for all Type 1 diabetes sufferers.”

Despite the success doctors are not sure how long the new cells will last and fear they may come under attack from the body’s own immune system.