An innovative study that aims to induce remission of type 2 diabetes has captured the attention of hundreds of Londoners. For those with type 2 diabetes like Greg Ackland and Jocelyne Chauvin, the idea of stopping all medications has translated from a dream to a reality through participation in the REMIT study at Lawson Health Research Institute (Lawson).
With a family history of type 2 diabetes, Greg Ackland was first diagnosed over six years ago. Ackland started treatment and was eventually taking four pills per day. "I watched the progression of my medications and thought 'I'm losing this battle,'" says 51 year-old Ackland.
He saw information about the REMIT study on the local news and after meeting the criteria he was enrolled. The outcomes have been incredible. Ackland has now stopped all medications and his blood sugar levels are good. He has recommitted to exercise which has resulted in weight loss and muscle gain.
"I'm glad I jumped at the opportunity to participate in this trial," says Ackland. "I've reset myself."
Lawson is one of seven Canadian sites taking part in the REMIT study which consists of a series of clinical trials that test an aggressive approach in recently diagnosed patients. A third REMIT trial is now being launched providing another opportunity for individuals with type 2 diabetes to take part.
"The goal of the REMIT study is to take a proactive approach to help people early in the disease, normalize their blood sugars for a period of 12 weeks and then slow the progression of the disease and the need for additional medications," says Dr. Irene Hramiak, Lawson researcher and endocrinologist at St. Joseph's Health Care London. "We want to know if we can induce remission, for how long and whether it matters what combination of medications we use."
REMIT is being led by the Population Health Research Institute (PIHR), a joint institute of McMaster University and Hamilton Health Sciences.
Read more on Lawson Health Research Institute's website.
Pictured (L-R): Margaret Watson, research coordinator at Lawson; Greg Ackland, research participant; Irene Hramiak, Lawson researcher and endocrinologist at St. Joseph's Health Care London; and Jocelyne Chauvin, research participant.