Healthcare 360: Looking Back on Advances in Diabetes Care

May 22, 2024

Podcast: Looking Back on Advances in Diabetes Care

On this week’s episode of Healthcare 360, Dr. Rob Fields sits down with George King, MD, director of research at Joslin Diabetes Center, to learn about his journey in healthcare and discuss the advances he has seen in diabetes care over the course of his long career. 

Unmatched Research Opportunities at Joslin

Dr. King wanted to be a physician taking care of people since his boyhood in Taiwan. He credits his descent from a long line of physicians in China with instilling his interest in the sciences.

His passion carried him all the way to medical school, and when it was time to choose a specialty, he felt a strong pull to endocrinology, particularly the study of diabetes.

“I find metabolic changes to be so exciting and so interesting,” he said. “Diabetes has always fascinated me because it affects so many organs.” That holistic understanding of diabetes has informed his clinical research throughout his career.

Now an expert in diabetes with an impressive laboratory at his disposal, Dr. King has been associated with Joslin Diabetes Center for more than 40 years. Recalling his days as an early-career researcher, he remembers being drawn to the reputation and research opportunities at Joslin with its affiliation with Harvard Medical School.

“Joslin has a great clinic with a great reputation of excellence in clinical research,” he said. “I wanted to do something exciting that would allow me to have success in what I wanted to achieve.”

New Horizons for Patients With Diabetes

In his four decades at the cutting edge of diabetes research at Joslin, Dr. King has seen – and helped drive – remarkable improvements in the way providers treat patients with diabetes.

“There have been incredible advances on devices, including the development of artificial pancreases for people with type I diabetes,” he said. “On top of that, we have just approved a new treatment to prolong the remission of type I diabetes if you just developed it within a year or so.”

The advances in treatment of type II diabetes have been just as encouraging.

“We used to only have two classes of drugs for type II diabetes,” he said. “Due to advances made in the last ten or so years, we now we have six different type of oral drugs.”

The advantages for diabetes patients are clear: “If you have either type of diabetes, there is a great deal of hope that you’ll go into remission and certainly control your diabetes and treat many of the complications.”

Every other week, we’ll chat with a leading expert in healthcare to learn about the many challenges and opportunities facing the industry. Click to watch or listen to the full conversation with Dr. King, and check in regularly for new episodes of Healthcare 360

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