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Publication: Diabetes Update
Seven-day glucose monitor & Stem Cells

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Diabetic Digest - Wednesday, June 6, 2007
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News, updates and help from and for the diabetic community.
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Readers:

I have two interesting articles for you today. The first 
deals with the new FDA approved seven-day glucose monitor 
and the second concerns the engineering of stem cells to 
produce insulin. 

         FDA approves seven-day glucose monitor

WASHINGTON - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration Monday
approved a device that measures glucose levels continuously
for up to seven days in people with diabetes.

While a standard fingerstick test records a person's
glucose level as a snapshot in time, the STS-7 Continuous
Glucose Monitoring System measures glucose levels every
five minutes throughout a seven-day period. The FDA said
that additional information can be used to track patterns
in glucose levels throughout the week that wouldn't be
captured by fingerstick measurements.

However, diabetics must still rely on the fingerstick test
to decide whether additional insulin is needed, the FDA
added.

The STS-7 System, manufactured by DexCom Inc. of San Diego
uses a disposable sensor placed just below the skin in the
abdomen to measure the level of glucose in the fluid found
in the body's tissues. Sensor placement causes minimal
discomfort and can easily be done by patients themselves.
An alarm can be programmed to sound if a patient's glucose
level reaches pre-set lows or pre-set highs.

A three-day version of the device was approved in March
2006.

Regards,
Steve

Diabetic Update Newsletter 
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Cord Blood Stem Cells Produce Insulin

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Stem cells taken from the umbilical 
cords of newborns can be engineered to produce insulin and 
may someday be used to treat diabetes, U.S. and British 
researchers reported on Friday. 

They said they were able to first grow large numbers of the 
stem cells and then direct them to resemble the insulin-
producing cells of the pancreas that are damaged in 
diabetes. 

"This discovery tells us that we have the potential to 
produce insulin from adult stem cells to help people with 
diabetes," said Dr. Randall Urban of the University of 
Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, who directed the study. 
"It doesn't prove that we're going to be able to do this 
in people -- it's just the first step up the rung of the 
ladder," Urban added in a statement. 

Writing in the journal Cell Proliferation, the researchers, 
who included a team at Britain's University of Newcastle, 
said they hope to eventually produce an alternative to 
using controversial embryonic stem cells. 

In the United States, Congress has been fighting over 
whether to increase federal funding of embryonic stem cell 
research, with opponents saying it is wrong to experiment 
on human embryos and supporters saying the work is needed 
to transform many fields of medicine. 

REGENERATIVE MEDICINE

Most of the science aims to create a new field of 
regenerative medicine in which stem cells from a patient's 
blood are grown and tweaked in the laboratory and used to 
replace defective or damaged blood or tissue. 

Other researchers are trying to learn how embryonic stem 
cells give rise to all the tissues and parts of the body, 
while remaining virtually immortal themselves, in the hope 
of eventually coaxing perhaps an ordinary skin cell to do 
the same. 

The researchers in Texas and Newcastle used human umbilical 
cord blood because it is an especially rich source of mature 
stem cells. 

One big hope is to create new pancreatic tissue for people 
with diabetes. In type1 diabetes, the body no longer 
produces insulin because those cells have been destroyed. 

Stem cell expert Dr. Rudolf Jaenisch, of the Whitehead 
Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, said he was 
skeptical about the research. 

"In the past, these claims have been rather unconvincing," 
Jaenisch said in a telephone interview. 

He said people who have tried to make insulin-producing 
adult stem cells before have produced very small amounts 
of insulin, or have even been mistaken. 

Last week, Geron Corp. said it had transformed human 
embryonic stem cells into the pancreatic cells that 
produce insulin. 

Copyright 2007 Reuters Limited.

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                    Diabetic Recipe

               Mediterranean Chicken Stew

(makes 4 servings)

vegetable cooking spray
2 whole bone-in chicken breasts, 2 pounds (960 g) total,
  skinned and cut into quarters
2 medium onions, 12 ounces (360 g) total, sliced
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 yellow or red bell pepper, 6 ounces (180 g) seeded and
  chopped
1 teaspoon (5 ml) turmeric
1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) ground ginger
2 pounds (960 g) sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
1 14 1/2-ounce (435 g) can no salt added diced tomatoes,
  drained
2 tablespoons (30 ml) golden raisins
2 cups (480 ml) fat-free low-sodium canned chicken broth

1. Lightly spray a covered nonstick pot with cooking spray.
   Add the chicken and brown over high heat for 2 minutes,
   turning chicken once. Lower the heat and transfer the
   chicken to a plate. Set aside.

2. Add all remaining ingredients to the pot except the
   reserved chicken pieces. Bring to a simmer and cook for
   2 minutes.

3. Return the chicken to the pot, cover, and simmer for 30
   to 40 minutes, until the chicken is barely falling off
   the bones.

4. Divide the sweet potatoes and chicken between 4 shallow
   soup plates. Raise the heat under the pot and reduce the
   sauce for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour some of
   the mixture over each serving; serve at once. 

Per serving: 429 calories (10% calories from fat),
             39 g protein, 5 g total fat (1.3 g saturated
             fat), 58 g carbohydrate, 8 g dietary fiber,
             90 mg cholesterol, 132 mg sodium

Exchanges: 4 lean meat, 3 carbohydrate (3 bread/starch),
           3 vegetable

Copyright 1997-2007 Diabetic-Lifestyle

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