- Posted September 28, 2013 by
"Artificial Pancreas" Approved in the U.S
Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas loses the ability to produce insulin — a hormone essential to digestion.
Medtronic's MiniMed 530G, which includes a sensor, sends out an alert if levels are too low, and if the individual is sleeping, unconscious or unable to react, the pump will shut off for two hours.
Blood-sugar sensors have been available to help people with diabetes program pumps to deliver the proper amount of insulin. Researchers have been working for years to link the two technologies to automate insulin delivery as part of an effort often referred to as an artificial pancreas.
Medtronic said its system is the first in the U.S. that can automatically stop insulin delivery when blood-sugar levels fall too low. A similar system is already approved for use in Europe. The company also said it can help people better control their diabetes versus the use of multiple injections.
The MiniMed has been approved for use by people with diabetes over the age of 16.
According to the Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal web site the device's retail price will be $7,350, though insured patients would likely pay between $500 and $1,200,