The Goal of the Research Center
The Rina & Avner Schneur Diabetes research center brings together top researchers aiming to find cure to diabetes mellitus.
Diabetes mellitus is a disease that occurs in all populations and age groups and affects more than 10% of the Western world. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, affecting between 6% and 7% of the US population equating to about 16 million people. The two most common general categories of this disease are termed type 1 (DM1) and type 2 diabetes (DM2). DM1 is an autoimmune disorder in which the body destroys the insulin-producing beta-cells in the pancreas, leading to insulin deficiency and a state where glucose concentration remain high in the blood stream, hyperglycemia. In DM2, the body develops insulin resistance, leading to hyperglycemia and in time insulin production decreases as well, and there is a loss of beta-cells as well. The associated complications of diabetes are cardiovascular disease, peripheral vascular disease, stroke, diabetic neuropathy, diabetic nephropathy and diabetic retinopathy. The development of these diabetes-related complications can be prevented and retarded with control of blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible. Thus, effective and early treatment toward normal glucose levels is extremely important in preventing diabetes complications and elongating life expectancy.
This research center focuses on both types of Diabetes.
The current type 2 research project brings together researchers from the faculty of Biomedical engineering, Prof Shulamit Levenberg, and the faculty of Medicine, Prof. Eddy karnieli, at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology to seek for a cure to type 2 diabetes. DM2 is one of the most important public health challenges requiring a cure rather than preventive treatment. This project focuses on the development of a new cure for this important disease in the form of transplantation of engineered tissue, which will provide a useful tool to reach better systemic glucose homeostasis in DM2.