Vaccines!

No, not the controversial H1N1 vaccine. There may be another new vaccine available in the near future (a few years). Are you ready???

A TYPE 1 DIABETES VACCINE!!!

Call my cynical, but I think this is ridiculous.

There was a short article about said vaccine in USA Weekend on Sunday. The University of Massachusetts Medical School, in partnership with the JDRF, has a two year plan for this oral drug. In the next two years they will evaluate and test the drug.

Who will receive this vaccine? Good question. Children who are “at-risk”. Again, maybe I’m being cynical…but seriously, what does “at-risk” mean?!?!

Doctors don’t even know what causes Type 1 diabetes. They have lists of potential contributing factors. So, who gets to be considered “at-risk”?

Maybe you think your body attacked your poor pancreas because of an infection. How many people get infections? Millions. Maybe a stressful childhood? Look at how many kids are in the foster care systems across the nation. Genetics? It doesn’t run in my family. Frankly, most T1ers I know don’t have any of these “contributing factors”.

If there was a cure we wouldn’t need a damn vaccine. I mean, it would be nice if AFTER there was a cure, researchers developed a vaccine to prevent T1.

Personally, call me crazy. I think research money should go to a cure first, THEN a vaccine.

Plus, how are they developing a vaccine if doctors don’t even know what causes T1? Am I missing something?

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About smashleeca

I am a lot of things...a Californian, a T1 diabetic, a Crohn's pt, a daughter, friend, former athlete, forever student, blogger, worker, and most of all life-embracer. That sounds corny...but I'll leave it. I'm just your average 24 y/o girl with a story to tell. View all posts by smashleeca

4 responses to “Vaccines!

  • Crystal

    I agree. Cure first. I don’t get these researchers, scientists….all this money….what?

  • tmana

    “At risk for T1”:
    (1) known family history indicates potential for carrying several of the genes associated with T1DM. Also, if personal gene scanning makes it as big as companies such as “23 and me” are hoping, people will be able to tell if their kids have those particular genes.
    (2) postulated association between certain environmental toxins and autoimmunity. Someone living in an area high in those toxins (either in utero or after birth) may be at risk.
    (3) known family history of other autoimmune diseases, since there is some indication that susceptibility to one heightens susceptibility to others (the T1-celiac connection is the best known, with at least 9 postulated common genes, but there may be relationships with rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases as well).
    (4) the “virus” theory indicates certain *specific* virus types — it’s not your common rhinovirus (cold), or influenza (flu) virus, but IIRC some specific enterovirus (affects digestive system).

    Obviously none of these is perfect, and there

    • tmana

      looks like that got truncated…

      None of the abovementioned determinants of risk is perfect, and there may be others of which we are unaware. But just as many of today’s vaccines only protect against *some* variants of flu, pneumonia, and hepatitis, the T1 vaccine may only protect against *some* causes of T1DM.

      I suspect many in the T1 community would welcome the idea of having fewer children and adults in this world needing to go through the daily management grind and concerns of Type 1 (autoimmune) diabetes.

      • smashleeca

        As a T1, I would strongly support my child (if I had one) being vaccinated from T1. But, I also know a lot of families who are adamantly against vaccinations of any kind (mine included). Do you think maybe insurance companies could use this against families and charge ridiculous prices for medications, because they didn’t prevent something they have the ability to prevent? That would be my concern.

        I still maintain that a cure prior to a vaccination is a wiser use of research money. It is much more beneficial, for right now.

        Who knows, maybe one day we’ll have both?

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