Young Tunisian researcher Najib Ben Brahim of the University of Virginia, USA, developed a new artificial pancreas device which became a breakthrough discovery to cure type 1 diabetes. This comes as the world celebrates World Diabetes Day on November 13th, 2011.
Mr. Najib Ben Brahim, 24 years, is currently pursuing his PhD at the Center for Diabetes Technology Research of Department of Psychiatry and NB Sciences of the University of Virginia. He described artificial pancreas as a revolution in the daily life of a diabetic person.
The new device consists of an insulin pump and a sensor of the size of a hair, placed under the skin to measure the level of blood sugar. It is administered by a smart-phone functioning as a calculating device. The system allows self-regulation of blood sugar in type 1 diabetic people based on blood sugar continuous measures. The solution was tested in France and Italy, where patients went out for dinner and spent the night at a hotel without worrying about the level of blood sugar. The result is a historical breakthrough in the treatment of diabetes.
Najib developed the system with Patrick Keith-Hynes, a University of Virginia professor, with whom he collaborated in the preparation of the system of remote monitoring of the device at the early stages of clinical tests. The device is also the fruit of the contribution of several collaborations between different research laboratories in Virginia, California in the US, France and Italy. Najib stressed the importance of openness to international academia by encouraging greater cooperation and sending Tunisian researchers to acquire the necessary competences. For several years, collaboration was limited to the French-speaking space owing to the historical ties with France.
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