Updates from Our 77th Scientific Sessions

Now in its 77th year, the American Diabetes Association’s Scientific Sessions brings together the world’s best and brightest minds to share cutting-edge research on nearly every aspect of diabetes. This year, the convention ran from June 9 through 13 at the San Diego Convention Center.

Whether you’re a person with diabetes or taking care of a family member with the disease, what happens at the Scientific Sessions matters. Many of the breakthroughs shared at the meeting are important first steps in future diabetes treatment, care and innovation.

Attendees mark their home countries on our world map

The five-day meeting drew more than 16,000 researchers and health care professionals from the United States and across the world to discuss the latest and most important research findings in the fight against diabetes. Highlights from this year include:

  • 380 oral presentations of research data in 49 oral sessions for a total of 348 hours of presentation time
  • 2,228 poster presentations (poster displays of research information). If you were to walk the entire set of posters, it would stretch over 2.75 miles!

The program was grouped into eight interest areas ranging from Acute and Chronic Complications to Islet Biology/Insulin Secretion. These findings will help improve our understanding and treatment of diabetes, and will launch a new wave of diabetes research.

Nearly 30 million people in the U.S. alone have diabetes. The severity of its complications and the high costs required to care for people with diabetes not only impacts individuals and their families, but also our health systems and economy.

Top diabetes facts:

  • 29.1 million Americans have diabetes
  • Of those 29.1 million, 8.1 million are undiagnosed
  • Approximately 1.25 million American children and adults have type 1 diabetes
  • 86 million Americans have prediabetes, putting them at high risk for type 2 diabetes
  • Diabetes remains the 7th leading cause of death in the United States

Friday, June 9

Dr. William Cefalu meets with scientists in our Pathway to Stop Diabetes program

Friday welcomed attendees and presenters to San Diego for Day 1 of Scientific Sessions. Research highlights included:

Overweight Boys Who Return to Normal Weight Before Young Adulthood Eliminate Increased Risk of Developing Type 2 Diabetes as Adults: Typically, being overweight in childhood and young adulthood is associated with an increased risk of developing type 2 as you get older. This study examined the possible connections between overweight patterns in childhood and young adulthood, and the possible later development of type 2.

Severe Obesity in High-Risk Youth Correlates Directly to Increased Incidence of Type 2 Diabetes: Obesity is a serious health problem among youth, especially in populations at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Research showed the risk of developing type 2 by age 20 was 12 times as high in severely obese American Indian children 5 to 9 years of age as the risk for normal-weight youth in that age range.

Increased Risk of Depression, Anxiety and Disordered Eating for People with Diabetes—Psychosocial Care is Key: People with diabetes manage a complex and demanding treatment regimen, and are at increased risk for, depression, anxiety and disordered eating and have high incidence of diabetes distress which can all compromise health outcomes and quality of life. The behavioral and emotional challenges of diabetes—referred to as psychosocial aspects—are the focus of a 2016 Psychosocial Position Statement by the American Diabetes Association (Association) and within the Lifestyle Management section of the Association’s 2017 Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes. Details of a new initiative focused on educating mental health providers on psychosocial care of people with diabetes and the results of two research studies focused on various psychosocial aspects of living with diabetes are highlighted here.

Saturday, June 10

Attendees outside the convention center

A Two-Way Text Messaging System Benefits Glycemic Control for Teens with Type 1 Diabetes: In a study released Saturday, teens with type 1 who used a two-way text messaging system reminding them to check blood glucose levels maintained or improved their A1C levels.

American Diabetes Association President, Health Care & Education, praises the Diabetes Prevention Program: Brenda Montgomery, RN, MSHS, CDE, spoke on the how the Diabetes Prevention Program improved the lives of those with diabetes and prediabetes. Also discussed was the Association’s involvement, based on the findings of the DPP, with supporting, disseminating and advocating for diabetes prevention. Read more about Brenda Montgomery’s address here: http://www.adadaily.org/2017/06/11/diabetes-prevention-program/.

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