An Overview of Diabetes Basic Research
City of Hope has one of the most influential diabetes research programs in the world.  Our scientists’ work has revolutionized the understanding and treatment of the disease and continues today with exciting developments in cell transplantation, gene regulation, immune tolerance, and gaining systemic understanding of diabetes as a complex, multifaceted disease.

Within Diabetes Research is the Department of Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases Research. Scientists in that department work in two divisions:
 
 
Landmark contributions

City of Hope’s leadership in diabetes began decades ago when the “father of endocrinology,” Rachmiel Levine, M.D., launched diabetes research at City of Hope. Levine had, in the 1940s, identified the principal cause of the illness: a reduction in our body’s ability to stimulate glucose entry in the cells, directly linked to the insulin production. 
City of Hope researchers, such as Rama Natarajan, Ph.D., are making landmark contributions to the fight against diabetes.
Today, City of Hope researchers continue to make landmark contributions to the fight against diabetes. Recognized nationwide for our innovative biomedical research, we are home to some of the most creative minds in science. Our strength lies in collaboration – leveraging the talents of investigators across departments and across the institution and rapidly translating scientific discoveries into new treatments. By working together and sharing results, researchers and clinicians are able to put theories into practice. As a result, excellence in one area fuels advancements in all areas.
 
City of Hope’s mission in diabetes research is to improve the quality of life for patients, prevent complications from the disease, and ultimately, establish a cure. At City of Hope, we’ve achieved many milestones in the field and are now pursuing the next generation of diabetes treatments in our efforts to end the devastation of the disease and usher in a new era of healing and hope.
 
Diabetes basic research is housed in the Leslie & Susan Gonda (Goldschmied) Diabetes & Genetic Research Center, which was recently expanded to provide urgently needed laboratory space. City of Hope researchers are using this lab space in their race to find ways to understand, control and cure diabetes, which continues to grow as a major public health threat.

An epidemic reaching pandemic proportions
 
Diabetes is rapidly progressing from epidemic to pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts that by the year 2050, if current epidemiological trends continue, one in every three people in the U.S. could suffer from diabetes at some point in their life. Diabetes is a global issue as well, as one of the world’s leading causes of death, disability and lost economic growth. Worldwide, health expenditures to treat and prevent the disease and its complications continue to grow, with $465 billion spent in 2011 alone.
 
To learn more about diabetes, go to the About Diabetes page.

Scientists in basic research provide the foundation for new therapies and approaches to battling diabetes. Our work touches on all aspects of the disease, including heart and kidney complications. Read more about our current projects and the work of each division by clicking on the tabs above.
 
Our clinical program and translational research
 
At City of Hope, our experience in the area of diabetes, including established analytic, molecular and clinical resources, have enabled us to rapidly translate emerging scientific concepts into new treatments. Our mission is to ensure that breakthroughs from the basic research of scientists in the Department of Diabetes and Metabolic Diseases Research are then rapidly translated into clinical settings where they can impact patients. The Department of Clinical Diabetes, Endocrinology & Metabolism is currently conducting a number of important clinical research programs to help put our basic and clinical biomedical research into practice.
 
To search for a trial, go to our clinical trials page.