Closer to the Artificial Pancreas

Research, Technology | diabetes, Diabetes Management, Diabetes Research, Technology, Type 1 Diabetes

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the first closed-loop insulin-pump sensor system for the diabetes market.  The MiniMed 670G hybrid closed looped system, often referred to as an “artificial pancreas,” is intended to adjust insulin levels with little or no input from the user. It works by measuring glucose levels every five minutes and automatically administering or withholding insulin. The system includes a sensor that attaches to the body to measure glucose levels under the skin; an insulin pump strapped to the body; and an infusion patch connected to the pump with a catheter that delivers insulin. While the device automatically adjusts insulin levels, users need to manually request insulin doses to counter carbohydrate (meal) consumption.
“Insulin pumps and glucose sensors have been on the market for years as separate items, however the combination of  the two with automated adjustment of insulin flow for basal insulin (not meal-time insulin) has just become a reality for consumers in the USA – the device is expected to be on sale in early 2017.  This is a huge step forward.  The ultimate goal, the “holy grail” of Type 1 diabetes treatment, a fully automated safe & effective closed-loop system or “artificial pancreas” remains at least 5 years off.  For now consumers who purchase the MiniMed 670G hydrid will still need to give bolus insulin injection whenever they take a meals.  For further information of pumps and sensors available on the Canadian market see this article.” – Dr. Tom Elliott
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