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Our research projects

With more lives to change than ever, we can't stop now.

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.

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

We fund world class research

Our research studies are reviewed by experts and approved by the Diabetes UK 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 necessary to succeed.

Find a research project

You can use the box below to search for projects by the type of research involved or the region or research centre where they are taking place.

We invite you to read about the studies that interest you and to consider supporting them through our Adopt a Project scheme. Each project page includes details on whether a project is available to adopt and how long it has left to run. A showcase of all our research projects is also available to download.

10 results found

Understanding the growth of babies during pregnancy in women with Type 1 diabetes

Project:
Eastern - Cambridge
Status:
Project not available for adoption
Tags:
Pregnancy
Project Summary

Women with Type 1 diabetes have a higher risk of having large babies, which can lead to complications during pregnancy. Dr Stewart wants to explore how chemicals involved in metabolism during pregnancy may be linked to this risk.

This could help to improve the management of Type 1 diabetes during pregnancy, and improve the health of pregnant women with Type 1 and their children.

Reducing calories in gestational diabetes

Project:
Eastern - Cambridge
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Project Summary

Gestational diabetes affects pregnant women and can cause complications throughout pregnancy and birth. It’s linked to mothers being overweight or obese, and can increase the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes later in life for both the mother and child.

Dr Claire Meek believes that reducing calories during pregnancy could improve the management of gestational diabetes, delivery of the baby and reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes in the future. 

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.

Monogenic diabetes and pancreatic tumours

Project:
London
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Rare types of diabetes
Project Summary

Dr Iacovazzo is studying a rare type of diabetes that occurs at the same time as tumours appear in the pancreas. Previous research has found a specific genetic mutation that may be behind this condition, and this study aims to confirm whether this is the case.

If successful, this project will improve our understanding of this rare condition and help to identify people at risk of developing it.

A potential treatment for extreme insulin resistance

Project:
Eastern - Cambridge
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Rare types of diabetes
Project Summary

Dr Robert Semple and his team will develop and evaluate the potential of proteins called antibodies for treating people with a type of extreme insulin resistance caused by rare genetic changes.

They will also develop a diagnostic screening test that will identify people that are likely to respond to the therapeutic antibody treatment.

Encouraging women with gestational diabetes to stay active

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

Gestational diabetes, which develops during pregnancy and usually disappears after giving birth, can be dangerous for the mother and baby if blood glucose levels aren’t kept under control. Physical activity is a good strategy for controlling blood glucose levels.

Dr Jepson would like to develop a feasible and sustainable way of helping women with gestational diabetes to be more active. If successful, this could improve the health of mothers with gestational diabetes and their babies.

Improving the treatment of neonatal diabetes

Project:
Exeter
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Rare types of diabetes
Project Summary

Neonatal diabetes is a rare condition that can be caused by a mutation in a gene called KCNJ11, and is treated with sulphonylurea tablets. Dr Bowman plans to investigate the safety and effectiveness of sulphonylureas in more detail than has been carried out to date, to improve the treatment that people living with this condition receive.

Gestational diabetes and the long-term health of offspring

Project:
South East
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Pregnancy
Project Summary

Professor Lillycrop is studying the genes of babies from mothers with and without gestational diabetes, to look for specific genetic changes that come about as a result of gestational diabetes.

She hopes to find out whether those genetic changes have an impact on the long-term health of the babies, and whether treatments to prevent the changes to genes from happening can be developed.

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