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Monitor Could Make Life With Diabetes Easier

Audio

Aired 7/29/10

Researchers at UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering have designed a device that they hope will provide a foolproof way to keep track of a person's diabetes.

— Researchers at UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering have designed a device that they hope will provide a foolproof way to keep track of a person's diabetes.

Diabetics must constantly measure their blood sugar levels to see if they need a shot of insulin. Typically, this is done by pricking a finger several times a day to do blood tests.

But an implantable monitor, developed by UCSD engineers and a private company, could allow this to occur constantly with no drawing of blood.

Joseph Lucisano is co-founder of the private company, GlySens. He said most ways of monitoring blood glucose are inconvenient and too infrequent.

"So we've focused on developing a long-term implantable device," said Lucisano. "Something that can be placed in the body for a year or more and provide patients with a continuous monitoring of their blood glucose."

He says the monitor has worked in animals, and human trials will begin soon. A paper on the Jacob's School research was published in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

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