How We're Advancing Care
The Immunobiology Section aims to elucidate the immunological mechanisms underlying type 1 diabetes and exploit the resultant knowledge to develop novel disease therapies.
The Non Obese Diabetic (NOD) mouse model, which spontaneously develops an autoimmune disease strikingly similar to human type 1 diabetes, is employed to investigate the immunology and genetics of leukocyte invasion into the pancreatic islets and the consequent destruction of beta β cells.
Engineered mouse models are also used extensively to highlight particular facets of pathophysiology. Collaborations involving human studies aim at developing methods to better predict disease initiation and to monitor its progression or reversal. Pilot clinical trials to prevent, halt or monitor type 1 diabetes are currently in progress, in part through collaboration with the Immune Tolerance Network (ITN) and TrialNet. This section's efforts constitute a broad bench-to-bedside-back-to-bench approach, and exploit a number of cutting-edge technologies.