T1D through the years
The Disease

Life with T1D 100+ Years Ago:

Very little is known about type 1 diabetes at this time. Sadly the “radical new method of treating diabetes” is a strict fasting and exercise regimen. Scientists had previously recommended “keeping as much fat on your bones as possible” and abstaining from alcohol.


Frederick Banting, M.D., develops the idea of purified insulin as a treatment for humans by studying diabetic dogs and their pancreases. In the first human test in 1922, a 14-year-old boy is saved with insulin injections after experiencing diabetic comas.1

"When it came, it was like a miracle."2
Dr. Frederick Banting
The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1923

Sir Harold Himsworth, M.D., discovers variability in the effect of insulin on people with diabetes. He distinguishes between those who are “insulin-sensitive” and “insulin-insensitive” — differentiating for the first time between type 1 and type 2 diabetes.3


Life with T1D 54 Years Ago:

  • A prototype insulin pump is so large it has to be worn like a backpack.
  • Insulin has not yet been genetically engineered and people living with T1D use insulin derived from animals that are unpredictable and hard to determine dosage.
  • Monitoring blood glucose at home is a complex process that requires testing urine in test tubes.4

The Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, now JDRF, is founded by Lee Ducat, Carol and Erwin Lurie and fellow parents of children with T1D to raise money to fund research to cure T1D.


Life with T1D 39 Years Ago:

  • Insulin needles are used repeatedly and need to be sharpened for each use.
  • A synthetic human insulin has just hit the market and people are replacing their animal insulin with it.
  • There is a 50 percent risk of vision loss from diabetic eye disease.

Mary Tyler Moore is named JDRF International Chairman. She was diagnosed with T1D at the age of 33 and became a lifelong advocate for those living with T1D.

"Both children and adults like me who live with type 1 diabetes need to be mathematicians, physicians, personal trainers and dietitians all rolled into one."
Mary Tyler Moore

JDRF formally launches its Walk, now called JDRF One Walk®, which brings together more than 900,000 people every year to walk for the cure. In 1998, JDRF Ride to Cure Diabetes hits the streets and raises, in the years that follow, over $50 million for T1D research programs like prevention, beta cell replacement and diabetes-related complications.


Life with T1D 24 Years Ago:

  • Insulin research has led to more customizable treatment, with analogue insulin offering a more rapid option. Pens have become a more accurate and easier insulin delivery alternative to syringes.
  • Pumps are now used by about 50,000 people living with T1D, and many find it to be a reliable way to manage their blood-glucose levels.5

The first JDRF Children's Congress heads to Washington, D.C., to meet with the nation's top decision-makers to advocate for type 1 diabetes research funding.

Children's Congress and other JDRF advocacy efforts have resulted in Congressional funding of nearly $2.8 billion for T1D research through the Special Diabetes Program.6


JDRF launches the Artificial Pancreas Project. The project funds research all over the world, creates a roadmap for commercial development, works with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to accelerate research and advocates for insurance companies to accelerate coverage.


The Network for Pancreas Organ Donors with Diabetes (nPOD) launches to study the human pancreas in T1D and find a cure. Today, with significant support from JDRF, nPOD has nearly 250 ongoing studies.


Life with T1D 14 Years Ago:

  • Continuous Glucose Monitors (CGMs) are now available for real-time monitoring at home, not just in the doctor's office. This changes the way people with T1D and their caregivers manage T1D by automatically checking blood-glucose levels.7
  • Pumps are much more widely used due to advances that made them smaller, more reliable and longer lasting.

Afrezza is approved as an inhaled rapid-acting insulin.


For the first time ever, teplizumab, an immune therapy that blocks the blood marker CD3, which activates immune cells, was able to significantly delay—for over two years—the onset of T1D in participants with a high risk of developing the disease.

  • ViaCyte showed—for the first time ever—that its VC-01™ therapy helps people with T1D produce insulin again. Preliminary data showed that when pancreatic precursor cells, called “PEC-01 cells,” are implanted under the skin and properly engrafted, they are capable of producing circulating C-peptide, a biomarker for insulin, in people with T1D.
  • Sernova, a clinical-stage regenerative medicine company, showed in its JDRF-funded clinical trial that its cell replacement therapy, the Cell Pouch System™, can produce insulin and release into circulation in people with T1D.
  • The FDA authorizes the second artificial pancreas system. The Control-IQ™ advanced hybrid closed loop technology can be used with Tandem's t:slim X2™ insulin pump and Dexcom's C6 continuous glucose monitor, gives the T1D community more choice and flexibility in their technology.

JDRF Launches T1Detect

  • T1Detect, JDRF’s screening and monitoring education program, launches. The goal of the program is to ensure everyone understands the importance of screening, knows how to get tested, and knows what to do after they receive their results.
  • As a result of successful clinical trials, there are now FDA approved automated insulin delivery systems on the market. These systems go a long way to improve outcomes and reduce burden for people with T1D.
  • FDA regulatory review is now under way for teplizumab to delay T1D in at-risk individuals. If successful, and the FDA review results in approval, we will be moving ever closer to a world without this disease.
  • Vertex continues to see positive results from the human clinical trial of VX-880—their stem cell-based cell replacement therapy—in people with T1D with severe hypoglycemia and hypoglycemia unawareness. All three participants in the trial are doing well, with one now being 100% insulin independent!
  • In the summer of 2022, the U.S. Senate passes the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), which includes some provisions regarding insulin, such as capping the monthly insulin cost at $35 for people enrolled in Medicare.
  • Several of the provisions included in the Act are the direct result of JDRF’s advocacy and the work of our champions in Congress.
  • JDRF announces the launch of the T1D Index, a first-of-its-kind data simulation tool that provides the most accurate and comprehensive global picture of type 1 diabetes in history.
  • The T1D Index is a collaborative development by JDRF, Life for a Child (LFAC), International Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes (ISPAD), International Diabetes Federation (IDF), and Beyond Type 1.

In November 2022, the Food and Drug Administration approves Provention Bio’s Tzield™ (teplizumab-mzwv). Tzield is the first disease-modifying therapy available to delay clinical T1D in people at risk of developing the disease. Studies have shown Tzield can delay the onset of T1D for approximately 2 years.

  • JDRF and partners announce support of the nonprofit pharmaceutical company Civica, which will launch three biosimilar insulins—glargine (Lantus®), lispro (Humalog®), and aspart (Novolog®)—that will cost no more than $30/vial or $55/box of five pens, regardless of insurance status. Civica plans to file for FDA approval of the first of these insulins in 2024.
  • In another big advance, the top three insulin manufacturers—Eli Lilly, Novo Nordisk, and Sanofi—announce major cuts to their insulin prices.
  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves Lantidra™, the first cell therapy to be authorized in the United States.
  • It is approved for the treatment of adults with T1D who are unable to approach average blood-sugar levels due to current, repeated episodes of severe low blood sugar, called severe hypoglycemia.
Your Birthday


We're on a mission to cure type 1 diabetes (T1D) and we've made a lot of progress toward that goal. Scroll around to see how far we've come. You can help the progress continue. Help fund T1D research today