Insulin taken orally does not delay or prevent type 1 diabetes in people at moderate risk (25 to 50 percent likelihood) of developing type 1 diabetes in 5 years, researchers reported today at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association. The finding emerged from the second trial conducted as part of the Diabetes Prevention Trial-Type 1 (DPT-1), which ended last month. The other DPT-1 trial, completed two years ago, found that low-dose insulin injections failed to prevent or delay type 1 diabetes in people at high risk (50 percent or greater chance) of developing the disease in 5 years.
A total of 372 people took part in the trial comparing the rate of progression to type 1 diabetes among those randomized to take a daily capsule of insulin crystals (7.5 mg.) or a placebo consisting of a harmless, inactive substance. All participants had a 25 to 50 percent chance of developing type 1 diabetes in the next 5 years, a calculation based on genetic, immunologic, and metabolic tests done before enrollment. Upon joining the trial, which began in 1996, all subjects were making normal amounts of their own insulin. Their ages ranged from 3 to 45 years old, with a median age of 10 years.
After an average of 4.3 years of observation, about 35 percent of people developed type 1 diabetes in each group. The annual rate of onset (7.2 percent per year) was nearly the same in both groups. Testing done as part of the study detected most cases of diabetes before symptoms developed, enabling patients to get prompt, early treatment. No side effects were linked to oral insulin.
For more information, go to:
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
Message posted by: Rashmi Nemade