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Study suggests treatment with antiviral drugs could preserve beta cell function in children newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes

09. October 2023

A recent study, led by Dr Ida Maria Mynarek and Professor Knut Dahl-Jørgensen, from the Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway, was presented on October 4, 2023 at the Annual Meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) in Hamburg, Germany. The study suggests that antiviral drugs could help protect insulin-producing cells in the pancreas in children newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D). The focus was on the potential role of antiviral treatment in preserving insulin-producing beta cells.

The research involved 96 children who were randomly assigned to receive either antiviral treatment (pleconaril and ribavirin) or a placebo for six months shortly after their T1D diagnosis. After 12 months, the group receiving antiviral treatment had significantly higher levels of residual insulin production, which is essential for managing T1D. The study suggests that antiviral treatment may play a role in preserving beta cell function at the time of T1D diagnosis, offering hope for improved management of the condition. Further research is needed to explore this potential and determine if antiviral treatment can delay the progression of T1D. The results were published in Nature Medicine. For more Info, we refer to the press release.