First-Ever Findings from JDRF-Funded Scientists Provide Evidence about How Killer T Cells Form Their Fatal Attraction with Beta Cells

Researchers supported by JDRF recently characterized for the first time the nature of the encounter between killer T cells and their targets—the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. Using an actual T cell that was replicated or “cloned” from a patient with type 1 diabetes (T1D), the
researchers provided valuable evidence about the interaction that takes place on a molecular level and contributes to the autoimmune attack that destroys beta cells. These findings can help guide the development of targeted therapies for the prevention of T1D.

JDRF Hosts First Type 1 Diabetes Biomarkers Conference

Consistent with its leadership role in T1D research, JDRF is prioritizing the investigation of biomarkers. We are advancing the knowledge about the direction and needs of research in this critical area, with the goal of providing vital information to reliably measure or predict disease progression in individuals with T1D and to indicate their responsiveness to therapies. Supporting the development of biomarkers for T1D could provide industry with tools to allow for more efficient and attractive incentives to pursue therapies for the disease.