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Question:

From Sherman Oaks, California, USA:

My 3 1/2 year-old son was recently diagnosed with Type 1. Since eventually all of his insulin-producing cells will be destroyed anyway, wouldn't it prove good research to extract just one good cell, perhaps freeze it via cryogenics, clone it enough times to replicate normal numbers, then transplant them back inside the body after a vaccine is developed in order to regenerate the body's natural production of insulin-producing cells?

Answer:

At the present time, the risks associated with the surgical procedure to remove a piece of the pancreas (I wish we could just remove a single good cell!) are too high, considering that there is no proven technology to either replicate the insulin producing cells or "vaccinate" against recurrence of diabetes. However, there is a lot of research work progressing exactly in the direction you proposed and I would not exclude that in a few years this may become a possible strategy.

CR

Original posting 11 Feb 1999
Posted to Research: Cure

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:02
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