Successful Trials Promote Artificial Pancreas Development in Europe



The mechanical artificial pancreas is not yet approved for use. An artificial pancreas is a mechanical system that consists of a continuous glucose monitor, a computer controller and an insulin pump system. These three components work as a closed-loop system: the glucose sensor transmits data to the computer, which then calculates the appropriate amount and rate at which insulin should be delivered. This information is then transmitted to the insulin pump, which delivers insulin.

The development of an artificial pancreas (AP) has made huge steps forward in the last 3 to 5 years and a large number of activities are going on in this area of research. Until now most AP systems under development were tested under highly controlled conditions only. The aim of our project, funded by the European Union, is to develop an AP system to such a level, that it can be studied under daily life conditions at the home of patients with diabetes. Developments based in Europe include work by a group of academic and industrial partners called [email protected] Their goal is to develop an artificial pancreas (AP) that would allow automated glucose control for people with insulin treated diabetes. The proposed system would combine a continuous glucose monitor, infusion pump and a software algorithm that calculates how much insulin to deliver at any time in response to the blood glucose level. The project is funded with a €10.5M grant from the European Commission’s Framework Programme 7.

Meanwhile, in October 2011, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) successfully completed a study with two patients with type 1 diabetes. These patients attained near-normal glucose levels after spending one night outside of a hospital while their diabetes was automatically managed by a prototype artificial pancreas system. These studies represent the first outpatient trials using an approach developed by the JDRF-supported International Artificial Pancreas Study Group.

For more information please request a complimentary Executive Summary (value of $195)  for our latest report entitled The European Market for Diabetes Diagnosis, Treatment and Drug Delivery. Information gathered for this report includes Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the U.K. Contact [email protected]