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The Chicago Diabetes Project is a global collaboration of scientists working to make islet cell transplantation a viable treatment option for all who suffer with diabetes. Chicago serves as the hub for the first scientific collaboration of its kind, a project that links leading scientists from all around the world to improve islet cell transplantation and accelerate research findings into standard patient care. This collaboration of talented researchers is working toward a single goal: A cure for diabetes.
In the last 20 years, a vast amount of scientific knowledge has been gathered about how insulin-producing cells develop, function and survive in the normal human body and how they become compromised and destroyed in diabetic patients. In 1985 there were 30 million diabetics, and today that number has skyrocketed to more than 197 million. By 2025, diabetes is likely to affect 300 million people worldwide.
The Chicago Diabetes Project began in 2004 and has become a marquee medical research initiative for the University of Illinois Foundation, a not-for-profit organization founded in 1935.
Chicago Diabetes Project team members are using a collaborative model to achieve a cure. By freely exchanging knowledge, team members have created a scientific alliance between institutions, a coalition that will provide for more direct and noncompetitive funding to accelerate finding a functional cure for diabetes.