Performance of an Artificial Pancreas System for Young Children with Type 1 Diabetes

Diabetes Technol Ther. 2017 May;19(5):293-298. doi: 10.1089/dia.2016.0424. Epub 2017 Apr 20.


Background: Young children 5-8 years old with type 1 diabetes (T1D) exhibit clear needs for improved glycemic control but may be limited in their ability to safely interact with an artificial pancreas system. Our goal was to evaluate the safety and performance of an artificial pancreas (AP) system among young children with T1D.

Research design and methods: In a randomized, crossover trial, children with T1D age 5-8 years were enrolled to receive on separate study periods (in random order) either the UVa AP using the DiAs Control Platform software with child-resistant lock-out screens (followed as an out-patient admission) or their usual insulin pump+continuous glucose monitor (CGM) care at home. Hypoglycemic events and CGM tracings were compared between the two 68-h study periods. All analyses were adjusted for level of physical activity as tracked using Fitbit devices.

Results: Twelve participants (median age 7 years, n = 6 males) completed the trial. Compared to home care, the AP admission resulted in increased time with blood glucose (BG) 70-180 mg/dL (73% vs. 47%) and lower mean BG (152 mg/dL vs. 190 mg/dL), both P < 0.001 after adjustment for activity. Occurrence of hypoglycemia was similar between sessions without differences in time <70 mg/dL (AP 1.1% ± 1.1%; home 1.6% ± 1.2%). There were no adverse events during the AP or home study periods.

Conclusions: Use of an AP in young children was safe and resulted in improved mean BG without increased hypoglycemia. This suggests that AP use in young children is safe and improves overall diabetes control. registration number: NCT02750267.

Keywords: Artificial pancreas; Children; Closed-loop control; Glycemic control; Type 1 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Activities of Daily Living
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Child
  • Child Behavior
  • Child, Preschool
  • Computer Security
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / therapy*
  • Exercise
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Fitness Trackers
  • Hospitals, University
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia / prevention & control*
  • Hypoglycemia / chemically induced
  • Hypoglycemia / prevention & control*
  • Male
  • Outpatient Clinics, Hospital
  • Pancreas, Artificial* / adverse effects
  • Virginia


  • Blood Glucose

Associated data