T-cell Tolerance, Biomarkers and Therapies in type 1 diabetes
Our research work focuses on Type 1 diabetes (T1D), an autoimmune disease resulting from the destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic β cells by the immune system, in particular by autoreactive T lymphocytes. Interestingly, we all harbor these autoreactive T lymphocytes but they are in most cases “benign”. So why do they turn into a pathological and aggressive state in diabetic patients? To answer this question, we are exploring the mechanisms that (1) fail to keep autoreactive T lymphocytes inoffensive and (2) make the β cells more visible and vulnerable to the autoimmune attack. This research will allow us to identify novel therapeutic targets to prevent T1D. In this perspective, we have already launched several clinical studies to screen for T1D risk in affected families.