Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Study Brings Hope for Cystic Fibrosis Patients

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Study Brings Hope for Cystic Fibrosis Patients

Article excerpt

Byline: Lisa Hutchinson Reporter

WORLD-RENOWNED scientists led by experts in Newcastle are pioneering research which will help thousands of patients.

Top medics at Newcastle University are leading a new study to investigate how genetic defects responsible for cystic fibrosis increase blood sugar levels.

The North East research could help sufferers across the world put an end to their nightmare.

The research is being carried out in collaboration with Ulster University, Northern Ireland; Lund University in Sweden, the University of Szeged in Hungary, and the University of Iowa, USA.

Cystic fibrosis-related diabetes (CFRD) is unique and has a different mechanism to Type 1 and Type 2. While the cause is unknown, the development of the diabetes accelerates lung disease, which is the main reason for death among people with CF.

Discovering how the defective gene affects the body's ability to regulate insulin levels is crucial to working out how to prevent diabetes from developing. It is hoped that the research, which includes CF and diabetes specialists in the UK, Europe and USA, will identify treatment options for CF patients to help prevent diabetes and improve life expectancy.

James Shaw, professor of regenerative medicine for diabetes at Newcastle University and honorary consultant physician specialising in diabetes at Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, is spearheading the international collaboration. He said: "This pioneering research project is extremely exciting as it brings together leading scientists from the fields of diabetes and CF, something that has not happened before. Given the significant, detrimental impact of CFRD on lung function and life expectancy for patients with CF, better understanding of these processes is urgently needed.

"Our research has the potential to identify new treatment options that could enable the majority of CF patients to live longer and healthier lives."

CF is a life-shortening genetic condition that causes lungs to become clogged with mucus, making it hard to breathe.

Each day two people die from the disease. …

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