Our research projects

We fund world class research

At any one time, we have around 120 research projects making discoveries across the UK. Each of these projects is only possible thanks to the generous support of our members, donors and local groups

Every project is reviewed by experts and approved by our research committee and our panel of people living with diabetes. So you're supporting research of the highest scientific quality, led by researchers with the skills and experience to succeed.

Your support of our research projects means we can keep tackling the complications of diabetes and bring us one step closer to a cure.

Find a research project

Use the search tool to discover research taking place in your local area, or choose a subject or type of diabetes you’re interested in.

Each project page showcases the details of the research, and if you find a research project you could really get behind, you can support it in lots of different ways.

111 results found

The DiRECT route to Type 2 remission?

Project:
Scotland (Glasgow), and Northern and Yorkshire (Newcastle)
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Remission
Project Summary

With support from our largest ever research grant, Professors Mike Lean and Roy Taylor will investigate if a low-calorie diet, alongside weight management support, can put Type 2 diabetes into remission for the long-term. 

Their vital work will find out if a low-calorie, diet-based treatment should be offered as a routine treatment for Type 2 diabetes. In the future, this could help to reduce the number of people living with Type 2 diabetes.

Get all the latest news on how the low-calorie diet research is going so far.

Improving testing for gestational diabetes

Project:
Wales - Swansea
Status:
Project is fully funded
Tags:
Project Summary

Gestational diabetes is linked to a higher risk of complications during birth, as well as a higher risk of Type 2 diabetes for both the mother and baby later on in life. Professor Thornton hopes to develop a quicker, cheaper and more informative test for diagnosing gestational diabetes. In the future, this could reduce the time and cost of diagnosis, as well as help to personalise future treatments for women with gestational diabetes.

Understanding how glucose enters a cell

Project:
Northern & Yorkshire - York
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Causes
Project Summary

In people with Type 2 diabetes, fat and muscle cells can’t absorb glucose from the blood as well as they usually can. This is called insulin resistance and can lead to high levels of glucose in the blood. A molecule called GLUT4 helps glucose to leave the blood and enter fat and muscle cells, but we don’t know exactly how it works. Understanding this could help to develop new drugs to prevent insulin resistance in people with or at risk of Type 2 diabetes.

Discovering new drugs for diabetic kidney disease

Project:
England – London
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Innovation
Complications
Project Summary

Kidney disease is a complication of diabetes, which begins with damage to the filtration barrier of the kidney. At the moment, there are very few drugs which directly prevent this initial damage. Dr Long plans to screen over 1,200 potential new drugs for diabetic kidney disease, testing them in zebrafish. This could inform the development of new kidney disease treatments in the future.

Can combinations of gut hormones treat Type 2 diabetes?

Project:
London
Status:
Project is fully funded
Tags:
Remission
Partnership
Project Summary

Obesity is the biggest risk factor of Type 2 diabetes, and bariatric surgery is currently an effective treatment. A rise in the levels of particular gut hormones are seen following surgery, and Dr Salem has found that the beneficial effects of the surgery can be replicated using the gut hormones alone in animal models.

During her fellowship, Dr Salem plans to explore the underlying biology of how gut hormones effectively treat diabetes and obesity, to inform the development of combination hormone treatments that could result in diabetes remission and sustained weight loss.

Harnessing genetic information to understand Type 1 diabetes and its complications

Project:
Scotland - Edinburgh
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Complications
Project Summary

Professor Helen Colhoun and her team will look for specific genes involved in Type 1 diabetes and its complications, to provide insight into the complex pathways involved. This will help to develop new therapies for Type 1 diabetes that aim to target those pathways. 

Improving diagnosis of Type 1 diabetes in later life

Project:
South West
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Healthcare
Project Summary

In people over the age of 50, diagnosing the type of diabetes can be more difficult. Dr Jones aims to find features and tests that are best able to help diagnose Type 1 diabetes in later life. This could reduce the number of people who are misdiagnosed and ensure people with diabetes avoid receiving inappropriate advice and treatment.

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