Diabetes is the elephant in America’s living room. With approximately 800,000 new cases diagnosed each year, it is a leading cause of blindness, kidney failure, amputations and heart attacks. All told, it now kills more than 200,000 Americans each year.

And these numbers are growing.

At OMRF, scientists are studying ways to fight this emerging epidemic. Researchers are probing the damage that occurs when blood rushes back into the heart after fatty arterial blockage—often a byproduct of diabetes—has cut off blood flow. This resumed blood flow can cause severe damage to the heart, ultimately leading to heart failure and death.

OMRF researchers are searching for answers about why diabetics are so susceptible to these types of injuries. They’re also working to develop new compounds that can prevent the cardiovascular injuries and death that often result from diabetes.

Investigators are examining whether a naturally occurring protein can be harnessed to treat type II (adult onset) diabetes. And they’re studying the causes of type I (juvenile) diabetes and other “autoimmune” conditions.

Through methodical scientific examination, OMRF is searching out new ways to prevent and treat diabetes. The answers we discover could improve the lives of millions of Americans.