Learn more about the latest research, findings and news from and about The Wanek Family Project for Type 1 Diabetes.


breakthroughs - arthur riggs

More than 250 physicians and scientists from around the world attended the 2019 City of Hope Levine-Riggs Diabetes Research Symposium, held April 10 to 13 at The Westin Hotel in Pasadena, California.


Debbie Thurmond, Ph.D., delivers and accepts the John K. and Mary E. Davidson Lectureship and Award for Outstanding Diabetes Research

Bart Roep

A paper co-authored by Bart Roep, Ph.D., Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and the founding chair of the Department of Diabetes Immunology at City of Hope, published in Nature explores new ways of replacing beta cells after too many of them have been killed by the immune system.


Recently a team of researchers led by City of Hope scientists identified a new potential target to keep the immune system stable and islet beta cells healthy, in an effort to keep type 1 diabetes at bay.

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Last year, the City of Hope Wanek Family Project to Cure Type 1 Diabetes launched 16 projects across multiple disciplines, including immunology, endocrinology, cellular therapeutics, nutrition and metabolism. Now, 18 months in, we are pleased with our progress and more optimistic than ever about finding a cure.

breakthroughs - islet cells

Many people struggle with both diabetes and cancer at the same time — none of this is random or coincidental. Rather, it's clear that, from biology to risk factors to treatment options, cancer and diabetes are intimately related in many ways.

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The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) board awarded $5.74 million to City of Hope to fund a phase 1 clinical trial testing a novel blood stem cell transplantation procedure for adult patients with severe sickle cell disease (SCD).

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City of Hope’s Diabetes & Metabolism Research Institute is committed to developing a cure for type 1 diabetes within six years, fueled by a $50 million funding program led by the Wanek family.

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Some type 1 diabetes (T1D) patients can be cured from the disease, at least for a number of years, with a stem cell transplant – those were the results of a clinical trial monitored by City of Hope’s Bart Roep, Ph.D., the Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and professor/founding chair, Department of Diabetes Immunology. The results were published recently in the journal, Frontiers in Immunology.

stem cells

A recent clinical trial monitored by City of Hope’s Bart Roep, Ph.D., showed promising results for a possible cure of type 1 diabetes (T1D). Although the study involved risky stem cell transplant procedures, it identified new paths for personalized therapies of T1D.

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An international team of researchers led by City of Hope’s Bart Roep, Ph.D., the Chan Soon-Shiong Shapiro Distinguished Chair in Diabetes and professor/founding chair of the Department of Diabetes Immunology, has been able to justify an alternative theory about the cause of type 1 diabetes (T1D) through experimental work. The study results were published online today in the journal Nature Medicine.

Bart Roep

For decades, scientists believed that the root cause of type 1 diabetes (T1D) was the immune system mistakenly identifying insulin secreting beta cells as a potential danger and, in turn, destroying them. Now, a study led by City of Hope’s Bart Roep turns that idea on its head.

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Debbie C. Thurmond, Ph.D., a professor in City of Hope’s Diabetes and Metabolism Research Institute and founding chair of the Department of Molecular and Cellular Endocrinology, has been named the Ruth B. & Robert K. Lanman Chair in Gene Regulation and Drug Discovery Research.

breakthroughs - arthur riggs legacy

City of Hope — widely known as a center for cancer care and research — is also the home of one of the most influential diabetes research programs in the world.

Wanek Project - Bart Roep

Diabetes affects over 422 million people worldwide according to the World Health Organization, but no two patients are alike. So in 2017 and beyond, treatments will increasingly make use of precision medicine to personalize treatment options. At City of Hope, researchers are combining the forces of a transformative gift with new resources to speed these treatments to patients.



City News – Spring/Summer 2017 - Featuring the City of Hope Diabetes Team’s Quest for a Cure City of Hope City News

Furniture Company Family Donates Millions to Cure Diabetes (in Six Years?!) Healthline

Could a Vaccine Be the End of Type 1 Diabetes? Los Angeles Magazine

$50 Million in Donations to City of Hope Aim for Diabetes Cure in 6 Years Los Angeles Daily News

New Theory About the Cause of Type 1 Diabetes A Sweet Life