Finnish, Swedish researchers take steps toward Type 1 diabetes vaccine

Two countries with the world’s highest incidence of Type 1 diabetes are working together to develop a vaccine for the illness, noting that a recent model in mice prevented virus-induced diabetes. The researchers at Sweden’s Karolinska Instituet and Finland’s university of Tampere said that this presents a clinically relevant model for Type 1 diabetes in humans, and that it had no adverse effects on vaccinated animals. 

“These exciting results showing that the vaccine completely protects against virus-induced diabetes indicate the potential that such a vaccine has for elucidating the role of enteroviruses in human Type 1 diabetes,” Karolinka Instituet professor Malin Flodström-Tullberg, whose group worked on the pre-clinical studies, said.

The University of Tampere currently is working to develop a vaccine that develops more viruses than the one used in the mouse model, with all of the proposed viruses having been implicated in Type 1 diabetes.

“The experiments here are important steps towards the clinical use of novel enterovirus vaccines,” University of Tampere professor Heikki Hyöty said. “Such a vaccine is under further development by Vactech and its collaborator Provention Bio for testing in a clinical setting.”


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