The UF Diabetes Institute e-newsletter

2021 / 3rd Quarter

Supporting Pediatric Research at UF

Kelly Guillou and her daughter, Clementine, are on a mission to help other pediatric Type 1 diabetes patients. Together, they are fundraising for the Diabetes Research in Pediatrics fund, with a goal to “move the T1D research needle.” “We must have research that will help fully explain the mechanics of T1D,” Kelly said. “With a full understanding come solutions. Solutions will improve diabetes technology and will hopefully lead to a cure. This is why we are raising money for the UF Diabetes Institute.” Visit to read more about Clementine and her family’s journey managing her Type 1 diabetes.


Centennial Celebration of

Insulin's Discovery

2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the successful treatment of canine diabetes with a pancreas extract now known as insulin.  This discovery by Sir Frederick Banting, Charles Best and John Macleod from the University of Toronto represented not only a remarkable scientific achievement, but more importantly, provided a life-saving intervention for individuals diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. Over the past century, through a series of highly collaborative international research efforts, astounding progress has been made toward understanding how Type 1 diabetes develops. Scientists have identified disease predictive biomarkers, calculated Type 1 diabetes risk scores and conducted clinical trials testing dozens of therapies in hopes of preventing or reversing the disease. Read the full article here.

What is ECHO® all about?

The Project Extension for Community Health Outcomes, or ECHO®, diabetes program empowers primary care providers to deliver best-practice diabetes care to underserved patients. The ECHO® model is particularly promising for reaching patients at risk of experiencing health disparities. People from underserved communities are much more likely to visit a primary care physician than a specialist like an endocrinologist, and Project ECHO® allows them to maintain continuity of care. To learn more about this innovative program, please click here to read REFLECTIONS, the Project ECHO® diabetes newsletter.

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Technology in Research

The research programs at the UF Diabetes Institute recently added a new piece of lab equipment to the mix: the MACSima Imaging System. “Imaging a tissue has long been limited to a handful of markers at any one time. The MACSima now allows researchers to scan more than 85 markers at once. That means our research programs can now take a rare tissue from a Type 1 diabetes organ donor and resolve what is happening at a tissue and cellular level with the depth that wasn’t possible using prior technologies,”, said Todd Brusko, Ph.D., scientific director at the UF Diabetes Institute.

Diabetes Core Podcast

Ashby Walker, Ph.D., assistant professor in the UF College of Public Health and Health Professions’ department of health services research, management and policy and director of Health Equity Initiatives at the UF Diabetes Institute, was interviewed at the Diabetes Core Update podcast, a monthly podcast devoted to the discussion of the latest clinically relevant articles from American Diabetes Association’s four scholarly journals: DiabetesDiabetes CareClinical Diabetes and Diabetes Spectrum. Diabetes Core Update discusses how the latest research and information published in ADA journals are relevant to clinical practice and can be applied in a treatment setting. Click here to listen to the podcast.


Fifth Among Top Public Universities

After five consecutive years of ascension, the University of Florida’s performance has positioned UF among the nation’s top five ranked public universities, according to the 2022 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings, marking an extraordinary milestone in the university’s history. Read the full article here.

HIRN Trainee Scholarship Recipient

Charles Lazimi is a first-year doctoral student in the UF Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering’s J. Crayton Pruitt Family department of biomedical engineering, working in the lab of Ed Phelps, Ph.D. Charles received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in biomedical engineering at UF. While completing his master’s, he was hired as a research scientist at L&L Biotechnology in Gainesville, where he developed skills in molecular cloning. His master’s capstone project consisted of sub-cloning a beta cell-specific promoter into a GABA biosensor construct to detect endogenous GABA release in human islets. The aim of his current research is to incorporate cloned biosensors into micro-physiological systems to better characterize islet-immune interactions and islet neurotransmitter auto/paracrine signaling.


The Sugar Science Podcast #93

Graciela Lorca, Ph.D., joined the Sugar Science Podcast to discuss microbiome probiotics & T1D. The episode is in "Ask the Expert style", a 30 minute digital cafe experience where scientists and grad students can meet up and exchange with thought leaders in the field of type one diabetes. The(sugar)science is an interactive digital platform founded to curate the scientific conversation among type 1 diabetes (T1D) researchers. Our goal is to expedite a cure for T1D by promoting collaboration across diverse research disciplines. Click here to listen the podcast.

NIH F31 PreDoctoral Fellowship Award

Congratulations to Mollie Huber on her NIH F31 Predoctoral Fellowship Award, “Investigating T1D pathogenesis using the live pancreas tissue slice platform.” Mollie is a fourth-year doctoral candidate in the biomedical sciences program in the labs of Mark Atkinson, Ph.D., Clayton Mathews, Ph.D., and Ed Phelps, Ph.D.


UFDI Diabetes Museum

The UF Diabetes Institute recently acquired diabetes memorabilia to create the UFDI Diabetes Museum with the intent to collect, preserve, interpret and display objects of scientific significance. To help with the project, Sam Huber, a fourth-year international studies student who plans to pursue a graduate degree in museum studies, is working to catalog more than 100 diabetes-related items. Once the cataloging phase is concluded, the UF Diabetes Institute will release a digital exhibit to showcase the entire collection.

Support the UFDI

Upcoming Events

  • October 26th, 12-1pm: UFDI Fall Series Seminar with Clayton Mathews, Ph.D., Professor of Professor of Pathology, Immunology, and Laboratory Medicine at University of Florida

  • Nov 14th: 2021 World Diabetes Day - Access to Diabetes Care video campaign release

  • December 13th, 12-1pm: UFDI Fall Series Seminar with Korey Hood, Ph.D., Professor of Pediatrics, Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University School of Medicine

Featured Publications

Barb D, Repetto EM, Stokes ME, Shankar SS, Cusi K. Type 2 diabetes mellitus increases the risk of hepatic fibrosis in individuals with obesity and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2021 Sep 23. doi: 10.1002/oby.23263. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34553836.

Beam CA, Beli E, Wasserfall CH, Woerner SE, Legge MT, Evans-Molina C, McGrail KM, Silk R, Grant MB, Atkinson MA, DiMeglio LA. Peripheral immune circadian variation, synchronisation and possible dysrhythmia in established type 1 diabetes. Diabetologia. 2021 Aug;64(8):1822-1833. doi: 10.1007/s00125-021-05468-6. Epub 2021 May 18. PMID: 34003304; PMCID: PMC8245361.

Bediaga NG, Li-Wai-Suen CSN, Haller MJ, Gitelman SE, Evans-Molina C, Gottlieb PA, Hippich M, Ziegler AG, Lernmark A, DiMeglio LA, Wherrett DK, Colman PG, Harrison LC, Wentworth JM. Simplifying prediction of disease progression in pre-symptomatic type 1 diabetes using a single blood sample. Diabetologia. 2021 Aug 2. doi: 10.1007/s00125-021-05523-2. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34338806.

Brusko TM, Russ HA, Stabler CL. Strategies for durable β cell replacement in type 1 diabetes. Science. 2021 Jul 30;373(6554):516-522. doi: 10.1126/science.abh1657. PMID: 34326233.

Castro-Gutierrez R, Alkanani A, Mathews CE, Michels A, Russ HA. Protecting Stem Cell Derived Pancreatic Beta-Like Cells From Diabetogenic T Cell Recognition. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 2021 Jul 9;12:707881. doi: 10.3389/fendo.2021.707881. PMID: 34305820; PMCID: PMC8299417.

Demeterco-Berggren C, Ebekozien O, Rompicherla S, Jacobsen L, Accacha S, Gallagher MP, Alonso GT, Seyoum B, Vendrame F, Haw S, Basina M, Levy CJ, Maahs DM. Age and Hospitalization Risk in People with Type 1 Diabetes and COVID-19: Data from the T1D Exchange Surveillance Study. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2021 Sep 28:dgab668. doi: 10.1210/clinem/dgab668. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34581790.

Docherty FM, Riemondy KA, Castro-Gutierrez R, Dwulet JM, Shilleh AH, Hansen MS, Williams SPM, Armitage LH, Santostefano KE, Wallet MA, Mathews CE, Triolo TM, Benninger RKP, Russ HA. ENTPD3 Marks Mature Stem Cell Derived Beta Cells Formed by Self-Aggregation in Vitro. Diabetes. 2021 Aug 11:db200873. doi: 10.2337/db20-0873. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34380694.

Foster TP, Haller MJ, Atkinson MA, Schatz DA. Delayed diagnosis of diabetic ketoacidosis and associated mortality during the COVID-19 pandemic. J Diabetes. 2021 Oct;13(10):837-839. doi: 10.1111/1753-0407.13208. Epub 2021 Jul 7. PMID: 34196115.

Jacobsen LM, Schatz DA. Insulin immunotherapy for pretype 1 diabetes. Curr Opin Endocrinol Diabetes Obes. 2021 Aug 1;28(4):390-396. doi: 10.1097/MED.0000000000000648. PMID: 34091488; PMCID: PMC8244997.

Hiller H, Yang C, Beachy DE, Kusmartseva I, Candelario-Jalil E, Posgai AL, Nick HS, Schatz D, Atkinson MA, Wasserfall CH. Altered cellular localisation and expression, together with unconventional protein trafficking, of prion protein, PrPC, in type 1 diabetes. Diabetologia. 2021 Oct;64(10):2279-2291. doi: 10.1007/s00125-021-05501-8. Epub 2021 Jul 17. PMID: 34274990.

Hood K, Laffel LM, Danne T, Nimri R, Weinzimer S, Sibayan J, Bailey R, Schatz D, Bratina N, Bello R, Punel A, Calhoun P, Beck RW, Bergenstal RM, Phillip M. Lived experience of advanced hybrid closed-loop versus hybrid closed loop: patient-reported outcomes and perspectives. Diabetes Technol Ther. 2021 Jul 16. doi: 10.1089/dia.2021.0153. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34270328.

Monaghan M, Mara CA, Kichler JC, Westen SC, Rawlinson A, Jacobsen LM, Adams RN, Stone JY, Hood KK, Mulvaney SA. Multisite Examination of Depression Screening Scores and Correlates Among Adolescents and Young Adults With Type 2 Diabetes. Can J Diabetes. 2021 Jul;45(5):411-416. doi: 10.1016/j.jcjd.2021.01.011. Epub 2021 Jan 22. PMID: 33722492; PMCID: PMC8238813.

Perry DJ, Peters LD, Lakshmi PS, Zhang L, Han Z, Wasserfall CH, Mathews CE, Atkinson MA, Brusko TM. Overexpression of the PTPN22 Autoimmune Risk Variant LYP-620W Fails to Restrain Human CD4+ T Cell Activation. J Immunol. 2021 Aug 1;207(3):849-859. doi: 10.4049/jimmunol.2000708. Epub 2021 Jul 23. PMID: 34301848; PMCID: PMC8323970.

Roep BO, Montero E, van Tienhoven R, Atkinson MA, Schatz DA, Mathieu C. Defining a cure for type 1 diabetes: a call to action. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2021 Sep;9(9):553-555. doi: 10.1016/S2213-8587(21)00181-9. Epub 2021 Jul 30. PMID: 34339632.

Sharp RC, Brown ME, Shapiro MR, Posgai AL, Brusko TM. The Immunoregulatory Role of the Signal Regulatory Protein Family and CD47 Signaling Pathway in Type 1 Diabetes. Front Immunol. 2021 Sep 16;12:739048. doi: 10.3389/fimmu.2021.739048. PMID: 34603322; PMCID: PMC8481641.

Smith LB, Lynch KF, Driscoll KA, Johnson SB; TEDDY Study Group. Parental monitoring for type 1 diabetes in genetically at-risk young children: The TEDDY study. Pediatr Diabetes. 2021 Aug;22(5):717-728. doi: 10.1111/pedi.13173. Epub 2021 Apr 19. PMID: 33704891.

Voss MG, Cuthbertson DD, Cleves MM, Xu P, Evans-Molina C, Palmer JP, Redondo MJ, Steck AK, Lundgren M, Larsson H, Moore WV, Atkinson MA, Sosenko JM, Ismail HM; DPT-1 and TrialNet Study Groups. Time to Peak Glucose and Peak C-Peptide During the Progression to Type 1 Diabetes in the Diabetes Prevention Trial and TrialNet Cohorts. Diabetes Care. 2021 Aug 6:dc210226. doi: 10.2337/dc21-0226. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34362815.

Walker AF, Cuttriss N, Haller MJ, Hood KK, Gurka MJ, Filipp SL, Anez-Zabala C, Yabut K, Roque X, Wong JJ, Baer L, Figg L, Bernier A, Westen S, Lewit E, Sheehan E, Basina M, Lal R, Maizel J, Maahs DM. Democratizing type 1 diabetes specialty care in the primary care setting to reduce health disparities: project extension for community healthcare outcomes (ECHO) T1D. BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care. 2021 Jul;9(1):e002262. doi: 10.1136/bmjdrc-2021-002262. PMID: 34244218; PMCID: PMC8268922.

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