Merck plans to acquire SmartCells

July 25, 2017

Biotechnology companies often face challenges in advancing novel therapies beyond the initial stages of research. Through its Industry Discovery and Development Program (IDDP), JDRF identifies unique technologies that would not be advanced otherwise and partners with companies to test concepts and bring better treatments and therapeutics leading to a cure to patients faster. To date, JDRF has funded type 1 diabetes projects at 30 companies, committing approximately $72 million in research funding.

"Our funding to SmartCells was an important step in what has become the JDRF Insulin Initiative," noted Dr Sanjoy Dutta, Director of Glucose Control research at JDRF. "We are focused on supporting an effort towards the development of faster-acting insulins, other glucose-responsive insulins and novel therapies that will help people with diabetes maintain glucose control with less effort."

Diabetes is a large and growing challenge with as many as 3 million people in the United States living with type 1 diabetes and another 30,000 are newly-diagnosed each year. A recent CDC modeling report indicated that as many as one in three individuals could have diabetes, either type 1 or 2, by the year 2050. Better treatments are desperately needed to help people live better with the disease today as research continues toward an eventual cure.

Source: Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International