Encapsulated Replacement Therapy Unveiled for Type 1 Diabetes Patients

A new therapy for diabetes, known as Encapsulated Replacement Therapy, was unveiled this week in Indianapolis. The device could mean insulin independence for patients with Type 1 diabetes. The Encapsulated Replacement Therapy is a replacement source of beta islet cells developed from stem cells. This therapy permits insulin-producing cells to enter into the body without being blocked by auto-immune cells.


The device, known as VC-01TM, is not yet available for commercial sale. It was developed by a company called ViaCyte, Inc., who received funding from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. The current trial is being done in order to evaluate the safety and efficacy of this new device. Currently there are four people that are testing the device. The manufacturers expect that it will be available on the market in 10 years.


The current trials are expected to enroll more people through 2015 and will provide researchers with critical information regarding the function of the device at the site of implantation, as well as, the ability of the implanted cells to mature and survive in the body. The study is expected to last for 2 years. Researchers hope that the implantation device will work and that the cells begin to reproduce in order to help the patients better manage blood sugar levels.

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