Some criminals will go to enormous lengths to beat a rap. The Palm Beach Post reported a Florida man, Wesley Shaffer, attempted to convince a jury that he was an undiagnosed diabetic who had been driven insane by eating large amounts of cotton candy. The jury didn’t buy it. Mr. Shaffer was convicted on burglary charges, and then promptly escorted to jail-far from the tempting dangers of cotton candy.
Dropping your HbA1c level 2 percentage points can reduce your chances of developing a microvascular complication such as nephropathy, diabetic retinopathy and neuropathy by approximately 50 percent, according to a report presented at NovoNordisk’s 1996 Copenhagen Symposium Diabetes, The Challenge. And, reducing an HbA1c level from 9% to 7% can result in a drastic reduction of complication risk. The report also mentioned that many complications may be slowed down and even halted with HbA1c levels under 7.5%. The report recommends intensive insulin therapy (ITT) as the best way to bring HbA1c levels into this range, but also notes that even with ITT only 20 percent to 25 percent of patients with type I diabetes achieve a 7% level.
African-Americans have an increased chance of developing type 2 diabetes, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA). The ADA reports that approximately 2.6 million African-Americans have diabetes, and as many as one-half of them do not know they have it. According to the ADA, diabetes is the fourth leading cause of death by disease in African-Americans, and it estimates that one out of every four African-American women over the age of 55 has the disease. It notes that maintaining a schedule of regular physical activity and a nutritious diet greatly reduces these risk factors and helps control the disease for those that have it already.
A group of researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and the Brigham & Women’s Hospital found that boys born weighing less than five and a half pounds are 75 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes later in life than those weighing seven pounds or more. Similar findings were found for girls in a study done last September. The study suggests that people born very small should keep careful watch over their blood sugar as they get older and make sure to tell their doctors about any signs of diabetes they might be experiencing, including excessive thirst and urination and unexplained weight loss.
Biocontrol has enlisted the services of Jeff Nesbit as the latest step in its attempt to gain FDA approval for its Diasensor 1000 noninvasive blood glucose meter. Nesbit, a former FDA Associate Commissioner of Public Affairs, will attempt to help Biocontrol through the approval process after its resubmission of its 510(k) in November 13, 1996. Biocontrol also hopes that Nesbit will help improve their tempestuous relationship with the FDA.
Novo Nordisk has signed a collaborative research agreement with Japan’s leading pharmaceutical company, Takeda Chemical Industries, Ltd. The agreement was initiated to combine Novo’s expertise in the field of diabetes with Takeda’s large library of small organic molecules that affect cell receptors for blood glucose regulation. It is hoped that this association will lead to the development of an orally-administered drug to control blood sugar levels for people with type 2 diabetes.
Selfcare, Inc. has acquired a large portion of the outstanding shares of Orgenics Ltd., an Israeli company that develops, manufactures and markets diagnostic test kits. Ron Zwanziger, Selfcare’s CEO, says, “The acquisition of Orgenics Ltd. will provide Selfcare with a profitable professional diagnostics business, as well as a strong foundation for the development of our planned infectious disease self-test business.”
Novo Nordisk has filed suit against Becton Dickinson for alleged patent infringement relating to the NovoPen 1.5 insulin delivery system. Novo Nordisk claims that Becton Dickinson deliberately created packaging materials for its own pen-like insulin delivery devices with false and misleading statements concerning Nordisk’s products and trademarks. Nordisk’s corporate vice president of health care international operations said, “Becton Dickinson has recently introduced an insulin pen and needles on whose packaging the name ‘Novo Nordisk’ appears without the proper use of trademarks. We believe this action implies that Novo Nordisk agreed to allow its name to be used in this fashion.” He adds, “Novo Nordisk has never endorsed the use of Novolin PenFill insulin cartridges in the Becton Dickinson pen product. It is misleading to consumers for Becton Dickinson to do so.”