Scientists at the Harvard university have managed to recreate human beta cells that produce insulin by use of embryonic stem cells, which will be potentially suitable for use in humans. These insulin-producing cells are nearly exact copies of the cells found in the body. This involves reprogramming human pancreatic duct-derived cells (HDDCs) to act like beta cells, and to secrete insulin in the pancreas, in response to glucose. This procedure will eventually lead to an end of daily insulin injections and the health problems associated with type 1 diabetes. The research was treated on animals and other primates and is said to hopefully, be used in humans in the next few years. By carrying out the procedure in this way, the scientists avoid potential genetic modification of cells, which may lead to risks, such as cancer.
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