Advancing Cures with Type 1 Diabetes Clinical Trials

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This educational content is sponsored by Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Editorial control rests solely with JDRF.

JDRF funds type 1 diabetes (T1D) clinical trials that are critical to bringing new devices and treatments to people with this disease. Currently, there are more than 55 JDRF-funded clinical trials, to both prevent and treat this disease and its complications. We hope that, ultimately, these trials will lead to a cure for T1D.

May 20 is Clinical Trials Day, a day to raise awareness of clinical research and the people around the world who take part in trials. Many people, however, are not aware of the various opportunities to participate in clinical trials and may find it difficult to identify trials that may be right for them.

You might be thinking that a clinical trial is scary and unpleasant. The reality is that many clinical trial participants report a positive experience. In a 2017 study, 91% of clinical trial participants surveyed said they would “definitely” or “probably” recommend clinical trial participation to a friend or family member. And, in the 2018 survey, 86% would participate in a clinical trial again.

Or you might be thinking that a clinical trial might help people in the future but won’t do anything for you right now. But the reality is that clinical trials may provide you with access to new medical advances. In some cases, participants are able to continue the therapy after the end of the trial, if it’s found to be effective.

Here are some other facts that might help you find a clinical trial that may be right for you:

Lots of Clinical Trials to Choose From

There are more than 300 clinical trials for people with T1D, including diabetic complications—eye disease, kidney disease, nerve disease.

Trials Need Participants, Like You

About 20,000 people are needed for T1D trials in the U.S., but researchers have reported a massive shortage of participants. More than 80% of clinical trials are delayed or fail because doctors cannot find enough people to take part.

JDRF T1D Clinical Trials Connection

That’s where JDRF comes in. JDRF has an easy-to-use tool to find a clinical trial that might be right for you. The online Clinical Trials Connection asks users some simple questions about themselves before matching them with trials for which they are eligible. Clinical Trials Connection uses your city, distance you’re willing to travel, and other characteristics to narrow down hundreds of trials to the ones in which you might be interested. You can try it out here.

Interested in a Clinical Trial?

JDRF has a new position to raise awareness of and promote enrollment in T1D clinical trials: Clinical Trial Education Volunteers. If you are interested in a clinical trial, and don’t know where to start, email clinicaltrials@jdrf.org, and we’ll set you up with a Clinical Trial Education Volunteer in your area. He or she will go over what the clinical trials are, what is available to you, and to answer any questions you may have.

This educational content is sponsored by Vertex Pharmaceuticals.