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Kick-off for major diabetes research initiative

10 September 2010

In Malmö the kick-off is underway for the strategic research field in diabetes, Exodiab, jointly run by Uppsala University and Lund University.

The sights are set high: in the next ten years to develop new methods for preventing, curing, and treating diabetes.

Exodiab (Excellence Of Diabetes Research in Sweden) is one of the government’s so-called strategic research initiatives, the largest ever calls for medical research in Sweden. The project has been granted SEK 28 million per year starting in 2012. The funding is divided between the Lund University Diabetes Center, 70 percent, and Uppsala University, 30 percent.

Diabetes disorders have both common and distinctive features. Genetics, environmental factors, and lifestyle are at work in a complex interplay behind both type-1 diabetes and type-2 diabetes, as well as mixed forms of the diseases.

EXODIAB’s agenda includes identifying the molecular mechanisms behind type-1 and type-2 diabetes and evaluating them as targets for treatment.

- To design biological markers that predict diabetes and diabetes complications and to develop treatments and vaccines to protect against complications.
- To continue work with the diabetes vaccine GAD to prevent type-1 diabetes.
- To develop anti-diabetic food that prevents and treats overweight and diabetes.
- To improve the long-term outcomes of transplants of insulin-producing cells.

During the conference in Malmö hundreds of scientists from Lund and Uppsala will present their research programs, give an account of the current situation, and state their aims for the future.

“I am convinced that our collaboration and this major research grant will advance the research front in the struggle against diabetes disorders,” says Leif Groop, coordinator of Exodiab.