As a chapter Research Information Volunteer, it’s my job to gather scientific research news and convey it to laypeople. In this role, I am frequently asked by people if they should be excited about a recent research result. In the case of Teplizumab (reported in last week’s newsletter), the answer is a definite YES. For the very first time, we have human clinical results that show a delayed progression of T1D. With a single 14 day course of treatment followed by 60 months of monitoring, progression to T1D was delayed by an average of 2 years. Furthermore, only 43% of the treated group developed T1D in that time period compared to 72% of a placebo control group. The clinical trials comprised 75% children and 25% adults, all with at least two or more autoantibodies. Even a two year delay will have a big impact on the lives of families. While this trial is closed to new participants, the current groups will continue to be monitored. It will be most interesting to see how many of the treated group remain insulin independent. We are still at an early stage and future testing plans are now being developed, likely including a larger phase 3 trial. I encourage all siblings of children with T1D to be tested by Trialnet. The autoantibody positive Trialnet population is the predominate source for this phase 3 trial. We will keep people advised as to timing of these trials.
This study was co-funded by JDRF, NIH, and ADA. Teplizumab is an anti-CD3 antibody drug that works to inhibit the autoimmune attack by T cells. JDRF is the leader in this area, having funded research in the anti-CD3 approach for over a decade. Once again, the vision of JDRF is pointing the way to the future. Click here for more detailed information on this study.
Written by chapter Research Information Volunteer Dr. Mark Kacher