Wow, some really neat stuff in the news!
Merck aims to put Amazon’s Alexa to work on voice-enabled diabetes tools, according to a post on FiercePharma.com by Beth Snyder Bulik, 8 March 2017 … thanks to Mike Hoskins for the heads up.
Using Amazon Lex, the brains behind the Amazon Echo device and its well-known voice-enabled assistant Alexa, Merck & Co, in a new partnership with Amazon Web Services, plans to initially work on diabetes. Its first initiative will be a call to entrepreneurs, techies and industry types for an innovation challenge expected to begin within the next month.
The yet-to-be-named challenge will be run by strategy and innovation consultancy Luminary Labs. While specifics haven’t been released, the call to action will “be open to solutions broadly enough that innovators of all stripes can come up with really novel ideas but being narrow enough to provide guidance and carefully evaluate submissions,” said Sara Holoubek, founder and CEO of Luminary Labs.
Live stem cell imaging technique opens new windows into pancreatic regeneration, as posted on www.diabetes.co.uk, by Camille Bienvenu, 3 March 2017.
Richard Tan, a PhD student from the Heart Research Institute, in Sydney, Australia, has developed so called “bioluminescent” (that emit a light signal in order to track their fate in real time once injected into the body) stem cells as a non-invasive way to give scientists immediate feedback on whether organ tissue regeneration is actually working.
In type 1 diabetes, stem cell-based therapies hold promise to regenerate cells of the pancreas. The goal is to have the stem cells transform into insulin-producing cells.
New Theory About the Cause of Type 1 Diabetes was reported by the ASweetLife team, March 2017. And it’s interesting!
An international team of researchers led by City of Hope’s Bart Roep, Ph.D., the Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and professor/founding chair of the Department of Diabetes Immunology, has been able to justify a new theory about the cause of type 1 diabetes through experimental work. The study results were published on 2/27/2017 in Nature Medicine: Autoimmunity against a defective ribosomal insulin gene product in type 1 diabetes
Now Roep, along with researchers from the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands, have found a mechanism in which stressed beta cells are actually causing the immune response that leads to type 1 diabetes.
“Our findings show that type 1 diabetes results from a mistake of the beta cell, not a mistake of the immune system,” said Roep, who is director of The Wanek Family Project for Type 1 Diabetes, which was recently created with gifts from the Wanek family and anonymous donors to support the institution’s goal of curing type 1 diabetes in six years. “The immune system does what it is supposed to do, which is respond to distressed or ‘unhappy’ tissue, as it would in infection or cancer.”