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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.

133 results found

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Region
Subject

GLUT Instinct: How do fat cells control blood sugar levels?

Project:
South West
Status:
Project not available for adoption
Tags:
Type 2
Causes
South West
England
Project Summary

Muscle and fat cells absorb sugar from the blood, using an important protein called GLUT4. But we don’t completely understand how GLUT4 is controlled. Dr Koumanov believes it could be a newly discovered protein called retriever, so she wants to study fat cells to find out for certain. If successful, these findings could help scientists to develop new ways to prevent or treat Type 2 diabetes

Preventing damage to the retina in diabetes

Project:
Northern Ireland
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Type 1
Type 2
Complications
Healthcare
Northern Ireland
Project Summary

Having diabetes can lead to damaged blood vessels in the retina, caused by high blood sugar levels. This can lead to visual impairment and blindness. Dr Judith Lechner wants to find out if a protective protein can be used to repair and reduce this damage, and potentially be used as a new treatment option in the future.

Lymphatics: a new treatment target for kidney disease in people with diabetes?

Project:
London
Status:
Project not available for adoption
Tags:
Complications
London
England
Type 1 and Type 2
Project Summary

Dr David Long and his colleagues are investigating the function of kidney lymphatic vessels in diabetic kidney disease. This will help us to understand whether targeting lymphatic vessels could be a novel treatment strategy for diabetic kidney disease. 

Superior screening for gestational diabetes

Project:
London
Status:
Project has less than a year to run
Tags:
Other
London
England
Project Summary

Dr Sara White will develop a new test for effective early identification of women who are at risk of gestational diabetes. The test could be available within three years, help to reduce the number of women who develop gestational diabetes and improve health outcomes for mothers and their children.

Not all fat’s the same: protecting against Type 2 diabetes

Project:
Northern & Yorkshire - Leeds
Status:
Project available for adoption
Tags:
Northern & Yorkshire
England
Type 2
Causes
Project Summary

Dr Roberts is focusing on fat cells, with different types responsible for storing and burning fat. He hopes to find specific signals from ‘good’ beige fat cells, to see if they can improve fat metabolism and protect the body from Type 2 diabetes.

If successful, this research could inform the development of new protective Type 2 diabetes treatments.

Investigating a potential cause of Type 1 diabetes

Project:
South West - Exeter
Status:
Project not available for adoption
Tags:
Causes
Type 1
England
South West
Project Summary

It’s believed that one of the factors involved in the development of Type 1 diabetes could be a specific type of virus that infects pancreatic beta cells, causing the immune system to attack them. The aim of this project is to investigate key proteins that may be involved in the potential viral infection of beta cells.

The results will improve our understanding of the causes of Type 1 diabetes, ultimately informing future research into the prevention and treatment of the condition. 

Can self-management therapies help with chronic pain?

Project:
London
Status:
Project not available for adoption
Tags:
Complications
England
London
Type 1 and Type 2
Project Summary

Current treatment options for chronic pain in diabetes (also called painful diabetic neuropathy) are not very effective. A PhD student in Professor McCracken’s lab will investigate whether self-management strategies that focus around psychology could be used to manage pain better.

If successful, it will form a base for developing psychological therapies for people with painful diabetic neuropathy.

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