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Thread: SmartInsulin--Has anyone heard about this?

  1. #1

    Default SmartInsulin--Has anyone heard about this?

    I saw this today and thought it was pretty interesting. It certainly would be great to just have one shot a day and the rest takes care of itself, but I wonder if that is actually realistic!

    SmartCells, Inc. and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Announce Partnership and $1 Million Funding to Advance SmartInsulin(TM) for Type 1 Diabetes
    Novel Insulin Formulation Provides for Glucose-regulated Insulin Delivery

    Last update: 8:32 a.m. EDT Oct. 22, 2008
    BEVERLY, Mass. & NEW YORK, Oct 22, 2008 (BUSINESS WIRE) --

    SmartCells, Inc. and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) today announced a partnership to advance SmartCells' SmartInsulin(TM) for the treatment of type 1 diabetes. SmartInsulin will be a once-a-day, glucose-regulated subcutaneous insulin formulation for treating diabetes. SmartInsulin is injectable, like today's currently available insulins, but designed to maintain continuous, tight control of blood glucose levels while reducing the risk of hypoglycemia -- like the pancreas does automatically in the absence of diabetes. As part of the agreement, JDRF will provide $1 million in first-year funding to support preclinical safety and efficacy testing. The partnership is structured to support milestone-based funding through proof-of-concept human clinical trials.

    "JDRF's support will accelerate the commercial development of our SmartInsulin therapy for type 1 diabetes. Our formulation is designed to address the most critical issue in diabetes treatment - achieving tight glucose control without inducing severe hypoglycemic episodes. To accomplish this, patients will only have to inject SmartInsulin once a day using the same needles currently used for conventional insulin. We expect these important treatment benefits will improve patient safety and quality of life while reducing diabetic complications," said Todd C. Zion, Ph.D., President and CEO of SmartCells. "We are very pleased to have JDRF's support for this program, and share their commitment to the development of breakthrough treatments for type 1 diabetes."

    "JDRF is committed to supporting the development of unique therapies that can improve metabolic control for people with type 1 diabetes," said Dr. Aaron Kowalski, JDRF Metabolic Control Program Director. "We believe that glucose-regulated insulin may represent a practical solution to the real needs of people with diabetes, and this collaboration illustrates our dedication to helping innovative companies test concepts and bring their products to patients faster."

    Under the terms of the partnership, the $1 million dollars of funding will support testing the safety and efficacy of SmartInsulin in preclinical type 1 diabetes trials. The partnership is intended to accelerate its development and reduce the time needed to progress to human testing. The grant is part of JDRF's innovative Industry Discovery and Development Partnership Program, which supports companies developing drugs, treatments, and technologies to address type 1 diabetes and its complications.

    About SmartInsulin(TM)
    SmartInsulin combines glucose sensing and insulin delivery in a single chemical construct that can be applied to the treatment of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Injected subcutaneously, SmartInsulin consists of an insulin payload attached to a biocompatible, biodegradable polymer, which is bound to an engineered glucose-binding molecule. Insulin is released only when the therapeutic is unbound by the presence of a specific glucose concentration. Once the surrounding glucose concentration drops to a target level, the injected dispersion stops releasing insulin, ready for the next glucose challenge. This approach can provide significant treatment benefits, including tight, continuous control of both fasting and mealtime blood glucose levels with a single dose, a significantly reduced risk of hypoglycemia and less frequent glucose monitoring.

    About Type 1 Diabetes
    Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that affects children, adolescents, and adults, in which the immune system attacks cells in the pancreas that produce insulin, a hormone that enables people to convert food into energy. As many as 3 million people in the U.S. have type 1 diabetes. People with type 1 diabetes are dependent on insulin replacement therapy for the rest of their life. But replacing insulin is not a cure, and people with diabetes are at significant risk for a wide range of serious complications, including heart disease, blindness and kidney disease.

    About SmartCells, Inc.
    SmartCells, Inc. is developing a breakthrough polymer-based dosing technology, invented at M.I.T. by its co-founder and President Todd Zion, which makes it possible to auto-regulate the release of a drug based on the plasma concentration of a molecular indicator. SmartCells is developing a family of SmartInsulin(TM) products that address the needs of diabetics, including the Company's lead therapeutic formulations for types 1 and 2 diabetes. The Company's proprietary dosing technology may have broad applicability for infertility, thyroid and growth hormone deficiencies, drug-device combinations, and improving treatments that suffer from poor adherence or a narrow therapeutic window.

    Luke 02/06/06: Dxd T1D May 3, 2008
    MM523 Revel
    Simon 12/09/07
    Maya 10/04/09

  2. #2


    So you'd only need 1 injection a day and nothing to cover carbs eaten? That sounds awesome!
    23 y/o, Dx 12/02 Type 1
    Pumping purple MM Veo
    BSN, RN

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Ontario, Canada


    Wow, if it works that would be an amazing advance!

    Except.... it would be scary to be one of the first people to use it. I mean, what if that big load of insulin got accidentally "unbound" all at once by some unforeseen chemical circumstance?

    I guess that's like worrying what if the pump accidentally gave you the whole cartridge full of insulin... you have to have a certain amount of trust in the research process.

    mom to Aaron, 18, dx'd Sept 05

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006


    One word - Wow.

    If that works it would be a wow - interesting concept!
    Carol G.
    mom to William, age 11, dx'd 3/04 and started pumping 10/04 - Animas 1200. Animas Ping started 01/09; cgms Navigator start 4/6/09; RIP Navigator 9-1-11, Dexcom 7+start 10/11, G4 start 11/12.
    and mom to Rod (15) not D

  5. #5


    Sounds great, almost too good to be true. But I hope they are successful. Just don't hold your breath, if they have not started preclinical work yet they are looking at at least 10-12 years before they could file an IND with the FDA. Thanks for posting that, it will be something to watch.
    Dad to Danielle, 15 years old, dx 8/17/2007, MDI (Novolog and Levemir)

  6. #6


    I have often wondered about developing an insulin that was reactive to your sugar levels. In fact my own thoughts are almost identical to what is being discussed here. I really hope it works as it would be fantastic and frankly makes a ton of sense as a treatment. I hop hope this works.Ali

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Moncton, NB, Canada


    Quote Originally Posted by Christopher View Post
    Sounds great, almost too good to be true.
    Oh no, you just jinxed it. The official spam/junkmail/telemarketing rule: If it's too good to be true, delete, discard or hang up.

    But seriously, that would so cool!
    Tim - Emma'sDad

    Emma is 10 years old. DXed Aug'05.
    Levemir, NovoRapid, One Touch Ultra-Smart, Freestyle Insulinx?

    Zoe born Aug 2007. Non-D


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