Scientists test efficiency of BCG vaccination in type 1 diabetes treatment
Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) and the Iacocca Foundation have announced the completion of the first phase of clinical trials for type 1 diabetes, which suggest that bacillus Calmette-Guerin vaccination may prove to be a viable treatment.
BCG is a drug that has been approved for use in treating tuberculosis and bladder cancer.
The study showed that low-dose regimens of BCG were safe to use in type 1 diabetes patients, eliciting no severe reactions other than light inflammation at the injection site. This vaccine has been shown to raise levels of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) in humans, eliminating the abnormal white blood cells associated with the disease.
We are making great progress and are really excited to be able to move this potential treatment to the next stage of clinical treatment, said Dr Denise Faustman, head researcher and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School.
The MGH immunobiology lab is currently planning a second phase of trials to continue investigation on BCGs efficiency as a therapeutic agent. Researchers hope to establish the necessary dose and timing of administration of the vaccine.