Montana State University

Diabetes, insulin to be focus of March 25 Café Scientifique

March 12, 2009 -- From MSU News Service

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Tel: (406) 994-4571
BOZEMAN -- The diabetes epidemic and the development of inhaled insulin will be discussed at the next Café Scientifique to be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday, March 25, at Ferraro's Fine Italian Restaurant in Bozeman.

Joseph Brain, the Cecil K. and Philip Drinker Professor of Environmental Physiology at the Harvard School of Public Health, will speak on "Obesity, Diabetes, and the Rise and Fall of Inhaled Insulin: Why Did Pfizer Pull the Plug on Exubera?" The public is invited to this free informal discussion.

The consequences of obesity are many, especially Type 2 diabetes. In turn, diabetes affects every organ in the body. Its impact on cardiovascular disease is legendary, but diabetes is also the leading cause of kidney dialysis and kidney transplants in the United States.

Besides preventing diabetes and its causes, Brain says that earlier diagnosis and more effective treatment of diabetes are needed. Inhaled insulin makes sense, he says, because it is effective and patients prefer it to injections. Pfizer invested $3 billion to create an inhaled insulin product, but a year after Exubera was approved by the Food and Drug Administration and the European Union, Pfizer withdrew it from the market and took a $2.8 billion write-off.

Café Scientifique, co-sponsored by Montana's INBRE Program and Montana State University's College of Letters and Science, provides a relaxed setting for people to learn about current scientific topics. The concept started in England in 1998 and has spread to a handful of locations in the United States. Following a short presentation by a scientific expert, the majority of time is reserved for questions, answers and lively discussion.

Café Scientifique seating is limited and the event is popular, so attendees may want to arrive early.

For more information, call Laurie Howell at (406) 994-7531 or For more information about the Café Scientifique concept, check the Web at

Evelyn Boswell, (406) 994-5135 or