Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Diabetes Health Center

Font Size

Stem Cells May Stop Type 1 Diabetes

Blood Stem Cell Transplant Leaves Diabetes Patients Insulin Free -- So Far

Early Results, Enormous Promise continued...

The treatment didn't work in the first patient, probably because he had too few beta cells when he started.

But the next 14 carefully selected patients did much better. All were treated soon after diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. All eventually stopped needing insulin -- for one to 35 months.

In an editorial accompanying the study, University of Miami diabetes researcher Jay S. Skyler, MD, warns against "false hope based on the preliminary nature of the study results."

Skyler warns that much work remains to be done:

  • The study did not include a control group. This makes it impossible to know what would have happened if similar patients had received no treatment -- an important factor, given that soon after diagnosis, many type 1 diabetes patients enter a "honeymoon" period of remission.
  • It's simply too soon to know how well the treatment worked, or whether patients eventually will do better than untreated patients.
  • It's not at all clear whether the treatment works because it stops beta cell destruction or whether it allows beta cells to regenerate.

Skyler also notes that this treatment isn't the only cellular treatment now being developed for type 1 diabetes. Other treatments include infusions of regulatory cells to reorient autoimmune cells, umbilical cord cells, embryonic or adult stem cells, and bone marrow transplant.

"As these further studies confirm and build on the results of Voltarelli and colleagues -- the time may indeed be coming for starting to reverse and prevent type 1 diabetes mellitus," Skyler suggests.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

Diabetic tools
Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and more.
woman flexing muscles
10 strength training exercises.
Blood sugar test
12 practical tips.
Tom Hanks
Stars living with type 1 or type 2.
kenneth fujioka, md
Can Vinegar Treat Diabetes
Middle aged person
jennie brand miller

Prediabetes How to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
type 2 diabetes
food fitness planner