The past 40 years have produced enormous advances to help people with type 1 diabetes keep their glucose levels in check. Still, even with devices such as insulin pumps to deliver the hormone and continuous glucose monitoring sensors to check blood glucose levels every few minutes throughout the day, many patients still experience wide fluctuations in their glucose levels or have trouble reaching their blood glucose targets, noted Aaron Kowalski, MD, director of research at the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund (JDRF), New York City, referring to recent research (JDRF Continuous Glucose Monitoring Study Group. N Engl J Med. 2008;359:1464-1476).
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Scientists are working to develop an artificial pancreas that uses a computer algorithm to process readings from a continuous glucose monitor and direct an insulin pump to deliver insulin at appropriate rates.
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