Practical Cure Projects Currently in Human Trials

August 10, 2022

This report identifies the eight projects currently in human trials that have the potential to become a Practical Cure for T1D and to be available in the next 15 years. Many of these projects will not make it to completion but this list represents the projects in human trials that are our best hope for a functional cure and are currently the furthest along in development.

Two weeks ago we published an overview of all the different types of projects in human trials and noted that there are only eight Practical Cure projects being tested in twelve human trials (some projects have multiple trials running concurrently). The last section of this report will highlight these eight projects, including timelines, a brief description, and the pathway they each are taking to a Practical Cure for T1D. 

What is a Practical Cure Trial?

A Practical Cure is any solution which minimizes the disruptive aspects of T1D and delivers a near-normal quality of life. A Practical Cure (sometimes referred to as a ‘functional cure’) differs from an idealized cure (or ‘perfect’ cure) in that it does not have to result in a reversal or complete elimination of the disease.

The definition of a Practical Cure was voiced by people who are currently living with T1D and encompasses their vision of a life where the daily disruptiveness of the disease is eliminated. One great benefit of the Practical Cure – in contrast to a perfect cure – is that it has the real potential to be available in our lifetime.

Practical Cure Pathways

In the ten years that we have tracked Practical Cure research, we’ve identified seven general pathways that researchers have pursued. Some pathways are seeking a supply of insulin-producing cells to replace those lost in the T1D autoimmune attack. Others are seeking to protect insulin-producing cells from autoimmunity. And some so-called “Super-Treatments” seek to make T1D management so hassle-free and non-invasive that the person with diabetes does not feel burdened by the treatment.  The pathways are:

Practical Cure Projects in Human Trials