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'Stem cells could hold the key to diabetes cure'

'Stem cells could hold the key to diabetes cure'
21st February 2008

Scientists are moving closer towards a potential cure for diabetes it has emerged.

A study outlined in the journal Nature Biotechnology claims that stem cells from a human embryo are capable of turning into any type of tissue and that researchers have managed to convert them into insulin-secreting cells which respond to raised blood sugar.

It is hoped that one day this discovery will lead to a renewable source of insulin producing cells which can be used to treat the condition.

Scientists have successfully injected mice with the converted stem cells and noted that after one to three months they morphed into fully developed cells, which proceeded to monitor the mice's blood sugar levels.

Diabetes UK told the Daily Mail that it was hopeful the research would lead to a cure for diabetes but that further investigations were needed before the technique could be used on humans.

According to the Diabetes charity, there are 2.3 million people in the UK with diabetes.

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