Therapeutics in pediatric diabetes: insulin and non-insulin approaches. Part of a series on Pediatric Pharmacology, guest edited by Gianvincenzo Zuccotti, Emilio Clementi, and Massimo Molteni

Pharmacol Res. 2012 Jan;65(1):1-4. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2011.08.011. Epub 2011 Sep 10.


Treatment of pediatric diabetes can be challenging. Strict glucose control can be accompanied by hypoglycemia and weight gain. Recently, there have been many developments in insulin preparations and delivery methods which make insulin levels more close to a physiologic pattern. Newly developed rapid/long acting analogues and delivery devices such as continuous subcutaneous insulin infusion (CSII, insulin pump) may reduce hypoglycemia and improve glycemic control. CSII combined with continuous glucose monitoring can achieve even better glycemic control. The closed-loop system is rapidly evolving and an artificial pancreas will be available in the near future. It is now recognized that several hormones other than insulin such as glucagon, amylin, and incretins contribute to glucose homeostasis. The role of co-adjuncts such as metformin, amylin analogues, and incretin based therapy is now emerging. Immunotherapy in a high risk population or patients in the early phase of type 1 diabetes may prevent further destruction of pancreatic β cells.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Blood Glucose / drug effects*
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Child
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemia / blood
  • Hypoglycemia / chemically induced
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / adverse effects
  • Immunotherapy
  • Insulin / administration & dosage*
  • Insulin / adverse effects
  • Insulin Infusion Systems
  • Pancreas, Artificial
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Weight Gain / drug effects


  • Blood Glucose
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin