Vol 59, No 3 (2008)
Review paper
Published online: 2008-05-08

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New developments in the treatment of type 1 diabetes mellitus

Ewa Otto-Buczkowska, Przemysława Jarosz-Chobot, Krzysztof Tucholski
Endokrynol Pol 2008;59(3):246-253.


In recent years, insulin analogues are the benefits of the use in functional intensive insulin therapy for the treatment of diabetes. Shortacting insulin (lispro, aspart and glulisine) and long-acting insulin (glargine and detemir) have been developed for the management of diabetes. Short-acting insulin analogues are an alternative to regular human insulin before meals. These new short-acting insulin analogues show more rapid onset of activity and a shorter duration of action. As a result of these pharmacokinetic differences, an improved postprandial glycemic control is achieved, without increasing the risk of hypoglycemia. In addition, these insulin analogues can be administered immediately before a meal. The long-acting insulin analogues provide basal insulin levels for 24 h when administered once (glargine) or two (detemir) daily. Compared with previous intermediate- or long-acting conventional insulin, these insulins shows a flat profile of plasma insulin levels . The use of these long-acting insulin analogues appears to be associated with a reduced incidence of hypoglycemia, especially at night. The availability of these new insulin analogues has the potential to significantly improve long-term control over blood glucose in diabetic patients. In recent years more and more frequently the method of multiple daily injections (MDI) of insulin is being replaced by the method of continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII). It is the most physiological way to administer insulin. In recent years treatment with insulin pumps has been used more frequently in the pediatric patients and in the treatment of diabetes in pregnancy. Use of continuous glucose monitoring systems enables detection of glycemia fluctuations unrevealed by selfmonitoring of blood glucose, such as night hypoglycemias and early postprandial hyperglycemias. Real-time systems allow to reduce HbA1c levels and limit number of excursions. Non-invasive glucose measurement devices are introduced. Fully automated continuous glucose monitoring systems integrated with insulin pumps operating in closed-loop model, requiring no patient assistance, are still being researched. Commercially available systems operate in open-loop model, where the patient has to decide on administration and dose of insulin.

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