JDRF Canada Supports Innovative Type 1 Diabetes Research

JDRF funds study to understand the molecular mechanisms that produce diabetic dysautonomia

Toronto, ON (February 5, 2013) – JDRF Canada is pleased to announce funding of a study seeking to understand the link between high glucose and abnormal nerve function in diabetic dysautonomia. The three-year study at McGill University – Understanding the molecular mechanisms that produce diabetic dysautonomia – will use state of the art imaging techniques and well accepted mouse models of type 1 and 2 diabetes to explore the role of high glucose in reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation.

“We are very excited to receive continued support for this study from JDRF, as with knowledge gained from an enhanced understanding of the underlying mechanisms, we anticipate that it will be possible to develop better management strategies to treat diabetic-induced dysautonomia,” said Dr. Eli Akude, Ph.D. at McGill University. “Dysautonomia is one of the several complications associated with uncontrolled diabetes and it encompasses a wide range of abnormalities that affect the quality of life.”

Autonomic insufficiency or dysautonomia is a broad term that describes abnormalities or malfunctions of the autonomic nervous system, and it is a one of the several complications associated with diabetes mellitus. Many people living with diabetes develop dysautonomia at some stage during the progression of the disease, and this affects their quality of life and life expectancy. The prevalence of this syndrome is markedly higher in patients with type 1 diabetes (T1D), with at least 50% of patients exhibiting at least one abnormal cardiovascular dysautonomia function test.

“This work will enhance our understanding of the etiology of the disease and identify new therapeutic and diagnostic targets,” said Dr. Akude. “The findings could thereby reduce the cost involved in the management of this condition and improve the general quality of life of sufferers.”

“JDRF is committed to improving the lives of the more than 300,000 Canadian children, adolescents, and adults living with T1D,” said Andrew McKee, President and CEO, JDRF Canada. “As the global leader in the fight against T1D, JDRF research unites the best and brightest minds from across Canada and supports those programs with the greatest potential of achieving our goals. We are proud to be working with Dr. Akude, funding critical research that supports our mission of finding a cure for T1D and its complications.”

Currently, JDRF is funding more than $45 million in research projects across Canada.

About JDRF

JDRF is the leading global organization focused on T1D research. Driven by passionate, grassroots volunteers connected to children, adolescents, and adults with this disease, JDRF is now the largest charitable supporter of T1D research. The goal of JDRF research is to improve the lives of all people affected by T1D by accelerating progress on the most promising opportunities for curing, better treating, and preventing T1D. JDRF collaborates with a wide spectrum of partners who share this goal.

Since its founding in 1970 (1974 in Canada), JDRF has awarded more than $1.7 billion (US) to diabetes research, including $110 million in 2012. Past JDRF efforts have helped to significantly advance the care of people with this disease, and have expanded the critical scientific understanding of T1D. JDRF will not rest until T1D is fully conquered. For more information, please visit www.jdrf.ca.

For more information about the study, or to schedule an interview, please contact:

Erinn Piller
JDRF Canada

Lets turn type one into type none