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Do Germs Trigger Type 1 Diabetes?

Arden's Day Blog

Arden's Day is a type I diabetes care giver blog written by author Scott Benner. Scott has been a stay-at-home dad since 2000, he is the author of the award winning parenting memoir, 'Life Is Short, Laundry Is Eternal'. Arden's Day is an honest and transparent look at life with diabetes - since 2007.

type I diabetes, parent of type I child, diabetes Blog, OmniPod, DexCom, insulin pump, CGM, continuous glucose monitor, Arden, Arden's Day, Scott Benner, JDRF, diabetes, juvenile diabetes, daddy blog, blog, stay at home parent, DOC, twitter, Facebook, @ardensday, 504 plan, Life Is Short, Laundry Is Eternal, Dexcom SHARE, 生命是短暂的,洗衣是永恒的, Shēngmìng shì duǎnzàn de, xǐyī shì yǒnghéng de

Do Germs Trigger Type 1 Diabetes?

Scott Benner

I always have this nagging feeling that I forgot to wash my hands or something when Arden was a baby. I know how ridicules it is to wonder but it's difficult at times not to think, "what if I could have done something differently...". Anyway, I thought this was an interesting article that you may like to see. Excerpts below with links to the entire research article if you're interested in reading more. 


from ScienceDaily.com

Germs could play a role in the development of type 1 diabetes by triggering the body's immune system to destroy the cells that produce insulin, new research suggests.

Killer T-cells sense their environment using cell surface receptors that act like highly sensitive fingertips, scanning for germs.

”However, sometimes these sensors recognise the wrong target, and the killer T-cells attack our own tissue. We, and others, have shown this is what happens during type 1 diabetes when killer T-cells target and destroy beta cells.
— Cardiff University's Dr David Cole

Scientists have previously shown that killer T-cells, a type of white blood cell that normally protects us from germs, play a major part in type 1 diabetes by destroying insulin producing cells, known as beta cells.

Now, using Diamond Light Source, the UK's synchrotron science facility to shine intense super powerful X-rays into samples, a team from Cardiff University's Systems Immunity Research Institute found the same killer T-cells that cause type 1 diabetes are strongly activated by some bacteria.

The team hope this research will lead to new ways to diagnose, prevent or even halt type 1 diabetes.

You can read the entire article on Science Daily here.