Provia Labs initiative to donate funds for diabetes research
Provia Labs’ Store-A-Tooth™, a leader in dental stem cell preservation, announces a new program, “Store a Tooth - Find a Cure,” to support type 1 diabetes research. With Store-A-Tooth, parents can bank the stem cells from their children’s teeth to take advantage of potential future stem cell therapies for conditions such as type 1 diabetes. To underscore its commitment to families managing type 1 diabetes, Provia Labs will donate up to 50% of its proceeds to fund diabetes research. The news comes in advance of Stem Cell Awareness Day on October 3.
Every time a parent enrolls with Store-A-Tooth to bank their child’s stem cells and mentions “Find a Cure,” the company will donate up to half its proceeds to support leading diabetes research organizations, such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston and other leading diabetes research institutions. The total funds raised will be announced at the Children with Diabetes Conference, July 9-14, 2013 in Orlando, Florida. Provia Labs will also make a donation for everyone who takes a short stem cell quiz on the newly launched “Store a Tooth – Find a Cure” web platform at www.stemcellsforacure.com.
“We feel it is important that all families have the option to store their stem cells, especially if they have conditions for which stem cells have a great deal of promise, such as type 1 diabetes,” said Provia Labs CEO Howard Greenman. “Unfortunately, most of the one million Americans affected by the condition and the 15,000 children newly diagnosed each year missed the opportunity to bank stem cells from their cord blood when they were born. The ‘Store a Tooth - Find a Cure’ initiative is driven by our dedication to increase awareness and raise research funds so that more children can benefit from a future stem cell cure for diabetes.”
A 2011 study published in the Journal of Dental Research showed that stem cells from teeth can produce insulin in a glucose responsive manner. In the study, the stem cells were harvested from baby teeth taken out during routine dental care in kids age 7-11; research has also focused on stem cells from extracted wisdom teeth. In the July 2012 issue of Diabetes Care, Chinese scientists reported that an experimental procedure using adult stem cells enabled half of their patients to go off insulin for over 18 months. The pace of research shows promise that in the near future, stem cell therapies might be useful in the fight against type 1 diabetes.
Store-A-Tooth makes it easy for families and their dentists to collect teeth removed during normal dental procedures, such as when baby teeth come loose, wisdom teeth are extracted, or teeth are pulled for orthodontia. Samples are sent overnight to a state-of-the-art laboratory where they’re processed and tested then carefully preserved at very low temperatures until the day new stem cell therapies become routinely available.
Store-A-Tooth recently exhibited for the third time at the Children with Diabetes conference this summer. The company is also a sponsor of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation Walk to Cure Diabetes in Boston (October 13, 2012).