Yep... I'll say it. I am F****g pissed off. Both Curedm's "Pancreate" and Smartcells Smart Insulin seem to have vanished into thin air without a trace. Big Pharma strikes again. I'm so sick and tired of this crap. Whomever is behind this should only become diabetic themselves! The Ultimate punishment!
Do you know how it happened, Gary? What are the details?
There are no details. Sanofi Aventis bought CureDm's Pancreate (a regenerative therapy) nearly two years ago and hasn't done a thing with it and Merck bought Smartcells a year ago which was approved for human trials in Europe at that time and there is no word or update on behalf of Smartcells or Merck. Unfortunately this isn't illegal and I'm sure things like this happen all the time but its downright disgusting. I'd honestly love to find a way to have a article written about this kind of stuff so the public knows what kind of games these companies are playing. I wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt but at this point I have no confidence either company will move forward. I just hope to god Dr Faustman can get around Big Pharma or chances are her therapy will never see the light of day. I just want to be able to set up an appointment at her office and walk out diabetes free!
Re smart insulin, I'd say they are deep in the woods on that and the thicket of hard science is a long slog, so I remain hopeful and patient. Not that i wouldn't like to walk into an office and walk out diabetes-free.
I had such high hopes for Smart Insulin. Devastating if this goes nowhere.
I know that we all have some mistrust of the Pharma companies. But I've not seen any announcement of these efforts being killed. Dr. Zion just spoke on Nov 17th, hardly a sign of these efforts being killed. We often don't realize the difficulty in bring a new medical treatment to fruition. Everything can look promising (like inhaled insulin) and blammo, it runs into trouble. Smartcells was purchase for $500M, which we believe is a lot of money, but it may well be that Merck has to spend even more than that amount and go years with trials in order to move this to being something that the FDA will approve. If there is an early misstep and smart insulin acts "stupid" and harms a patient, then the "promising silver bullet" will be dead in it's tracks.
When I was first diagnosed 30+ years ago, the doc told me I would probably die from diabetes before I was 40. But not to lose all hope, that a cure might be 5 years away.
In the meantime there have been hundreds of possible cures/advances in treatment that never came to fruition. Everything from the dream beam to smart insulin to a bunch of others that have fallen off the radar.
Today I am 44. And the cure is still nowhere to be seen. Do you think I'm counting on a cure in the next 5 years? Do you think I ever get my hopes up? No, of course not.
How did I make it to 44? I give the DCCT and the ideas behind it (especially home bg monitoring and more than one shot a day) almost all the credit. Not any magical new smart insulin or pancreate.
At least, I don't hope for a cure for myself. Maybe for the young kids I will raise some hope. But I'm not going to raise any hope for myself being cured or having some new magical new problem-free treatment. I think it's largely unfair for me to try to raise hope for the kids either. Any kid (or their parents) counting on a easy cure or magic treatment in the next 5 years might somehow avoid the things that actually make it possible to live for 30, 50, 70 years with this disease.
Exactly. And sometimes this stuff works great in mice, but doesn't prove effective in humans. I want to be a mouse. Their diabetes is ALWAYS getting cured!
Diabetes free!. Dare we hope for such a thing. I've never heard of these people but i'm guessing it's all about money and who can make the most, and definatly not about treating diabetes.
I think waiting on a cure is extremely counter productive, focus on the here and now and getting the best quality of life you possibly can with the tools that are at your disposal.
A cure isn't happening any time soon....
I agree, well said.
Some reasonable points but neither of these teatments are really a cure. They are just that, another treatment. Dr Faustman is one of the only ones trying to reverse the disease by destroying what is causing it in the first place. I understand any potential treatment overall is a long shot but its beyond frustrating to not see these things moving forward. The problem with big pharma is that they have lots of drug candidates in their pipline's so there is no urgency and focus on any one specific drug. If Merck was poised to only be focused on Smart Insulin and nothing else these trials would have likely started. Honestly I don't see how "Quality of life" can be put in the same sentence with diabetes unless the word "horrible" is before it. One way or another if a treatment for myself isn't available in the next 7 to 10 years (if I am still alive) I will plead for a pancreas transplant and if I die on the table so be it. I came into this world basically relieing on insulin and I refuse to go out in the same manor if I can help it. My life is already ruined because of it so now its more or less about vengence,
Gary, we all know how you feel but there isnt one person in my entire life all the 53 years I have lived who would say my quality of life is horrible.
In fact, with 41 years of type I diabetes I am more healthy than half of my friends. I also lead a fibromyalgia support group where people are suffering from chronic pain and I cant say (nor would they say) that their quality of life is horrible either. I think you would do the cause a bit of a favor if you let people in your realm know that this condition can be handled. I know you wont, but I wish you would.
Because the way you feel paints a picture for many that simply isnt true.
I'm not discounting your situation, but just sayin. No one in my entire world sees me as living much of a different life than they do. Some blood sugar testing, a pump which they dont really understand, but they have no reason to think that this has made my life miserable. It simply hasnt.
Btw, I hope your Mother has found some relieft for her pain.
Many blessings to you and her.
I certainly agree I dont think a cure will happen either. At least NOT in the next 5 years. To me it seems to be some mantra everyone gets tossed at them, and I think to put all your hope and faith in a cure, well live for today, hope for tomorrow. Im going to make the most out of what I have today, not put my life on hold HOPING some cure will come along.
Im my 28 plus years while NOT a cure, the advancements alone are pretty astonshing. My first meter was some HUGE ackward contraption, with the finger pricker from h e double hockey sticks. It took a HUGE drop of blood, was painful to test and took a lot of blotting and waiting, and every strip had to be calibrated...BUT at the time that was high tech. Today my meter takes 5 seconds, a tiny drop of blood, the lancets are micro small now, no blotting, no calibrating, just stick and BAM you have your results.
When diagnosed there was essentially beef and pork insulin R and NPH, do they even MAKE beef and pork insulin anymore, lol...after NEARLY DYING on that stuff, a few years later Human insulins started coming out but I was still on R and NPH, sometime after that man I was thrilled what 70/30 no longer have to MIX my insulin...well I think from what I've read several people can say what a nightmare that insulin is. Today there are so many more types out, LONG acting, rapid acting, pumps the size of pagers. There really has been a LOT of progress. When I was first dx'd it was 2 shots a day, and at least test twice a day. You were on such a tight schedule, the diet was horrible. If you didnt eat on time, ate to much, ate too little you were messed up. Look at the flexiblity many people today enjoy. Even with MDI, it is a lot more flexible than it used to be. So yes while there is definately the need everyday for better treatment, for someday a cure. Live for today, enjoy the treatment we have today, make the most of it. Like I told my friend diabetes ONLY limits you by how much you let it limit you. I live with it, but I dont let it limit me.
I am a toxicologist, I work on a number of projects and only once have had to interact with the FDA. I interact with the EPA all the time.
I contract for big Pharma - and you a missing a whole bunch of US litigiousness and government. I've worked for years on a chemical only to have the gov't come in and say, "but it reminds us of this totally irrelevant thing from 20 years ago, and we aren't going to let you produce it in this country". Or, someone sues because of something that might be related or not, or a component that is needed is banned, or made using a process that has been altered so all the trials need to start over... It costs a great deal of money and time to develop these things to the point of human trials and the hoops are dumbfounding. The estimate a few years ago was up to 20 years to bring something like this to market - 20 years of jumping through hoops and making sure of patient safety.
then, when something does come out, and an adverse reaction was missed - the public blames pharma and the gov't makes the regulations worse.
Then you have public outcries from ignorance and misunderstandings (bisphenol A is a big example of this, all fo the $ it's costed us as consumers because of an outcry based on spurious data fueled by the media).
With the number of diabetics in the country, I bet at least a few executives from those companies are diabetics.
lol I wish I were a mouse too!! :)
That is very true, the US is a very litigious bunch. I had a doctor tell me who has practiced in other countries and couldn't get over how much more Lantus is here to buy when other parts of the world it is much cheaper and everyone has access to these newer insulins. Like you stated it is the litigiousness of this country that is a big problem. One big lawsuit can ruin a company. So while yes I think sometimes there are a lot of delays and Im not above thinking there is big money in keeping people dependent on medications, but I don't think that is the only cause for delays in newer treatments either.
The moral to the story is don't ever get sick. Many people are very fortunate and don't succumb to illness until the end of their game. I just think if we had everyone on our side really wanting to change the way our condition is treated something would get done regardless of cost. Diabetes may not be curable but I have to believe it can be treated much safer and more effectively then what we have now. Either through some form of transplantation or even something like smart Insulin. I think the FDA and regulators are part of the problem but still the science has to prove itself or its all for nothing anyway. All I know is I'm ready to load my needle up with BCG and see what happens.
I couldn't agree more, we're almost in 2012 i think it's about time for a change in the way diabetes is treated. We have pumps and other technology of the same ilk granted but these treatments i feel are still enslaving. We need something like an insulin patch, which i think is possible seen as we now have patches (size of a small dressing) for pain. If this disease cannot be cured then at least give us something that at the very least provides more of a sense of freedom.
There are a few companies supposedly real close to a non invasive glucose meter but again its just another tool to make life a little easier. If you think about the average diabetic is checking their glucose 6-8 daily (some even more) that leads me to believe diabetes is on their minds most of the time. Not a good scenario. As far as I'm concerned the last breakthrough for diabetes was in 96 with the rapid acting humalog which I didn't even start using till 99. So basically in the last 15 we got zippo.