Previous research has suggested that higher levels of acute-phase proteins, cytokines, and chemokines may play a role in diabetes pathology.
Specifically, there is much speculation about interleukin-1 beta which blocks the function and promotes death of the beta cells.
Therefore, a multicenter, randomized, double blind trial was conducted by Sloan-Lancaster and colleagues to discover the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of an antibody against the cytokine LY2189192 (or LY): 106 diabetic patients received either a subcutaneous placebo or LY dosed at 0.6, 18, or 180 milligrams on a weekly basis for 12 weeks.
Results indicated a 0.27%, 0.38%, and 0.25% drop in HbA1c after 12 weeks for the LY 0.6,18, and 180 milligrams doses, respectively. These results did show some reversal by follow up 12 weeks later. Fasting glucose was also reduced during treatment, but showed some rebound at follow-up.
Adverse events were similar amidst the placebo and LY arm- 74.1% and 77.2% respectively. The most common adverse events reported for the LY doses combined were headache, nasopharyngitis, arthralgia, and diarrhea.
Larger and longer studies are needed to establish antibody treatment as a therapeutic option.
Sloan-Lancaster J, et al "Double-blind, randomized study evaluating the glycemic and anti-inflammatory effects of subcutaneous LY2189102, a neutralizing IL-1b antibody, in patients with type 2 diabetes" Diabetes Care 2013; DOI: 10.2337/dc12-1835.