AND THE 2013 SIR JULES THORN AWARD FOR BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH GOES TO...
Dr Frank Waldron-Lynch and the team at the University of Cambridge JDRF/Wellcome Trust Diabetes and Inflammation Laboratory, who have been awarded just over a million pounds by the Sir Jules Thorn Charitable Trust to enable them to conduct a clinical trial to develop a new treatment for type 1 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is the most common severe chronic autoimmune disease worldwide and the incidence of the disease is rising rapidly. Dr Waldron-Lynch's translational research focuses on the role of interleukin-2 (IL-2), a molecule that helps cells known as regulatory T cells (Treg) suppress the destruction of the body's insulin-producing beta cells. The objective of this trial is to establish the optimum frequency of IL-2 administration to maintain an increased Treg function in T1D. Dr Waldron-Lynch adds: "We also hope to discover in this mechanistic trial the immunophenotypic, genetic and epigenetic effects of ultra-low dose IL-2 administration, as well as identifying potential biomarkers for future clinical trials."
This trial forms the second stage of a clinical development programme for ultra-low dose IL-2 for the treatment of T1D, and the first study is now open at Addenbrooke's. Further details are available at http://www.clinical-trials-type1-diabetes.com/.