Director of Research
Roman Hovorka is interested in taking PhD students.
Office Phone: 01223 762862
1984 – MSc, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
1989 – PhD, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
We are developing and testing a prototype of artificial pancreas. The artificial pancreas consists of a subcutaneous glucose monitor, a control algorithm, and an insulin pump and has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of subjects with type 1 diabetes. We are also interested in insulin titration in type 2 diabetes and critically ill subjects. The work includes the development of a computer-based simulation environment, where we evaluate and optimise the system performance prior to clinical investigations. We are developing in silico population of children, adolescents, and adults treated by insulin with an appropriate representation of between and within subject variability.
More generally, we support the diagnosis and treatment of metabolic diseases using mathematical modelling techniques with particular focus on diabetes. We use existing and develop new methods to quantify insulin sensitivity, insulin secretion, and metabolic fluxes under steady and non-steady state conditions with deterministic and stochastic modelling techniques.
Ms Janet Allen, Research Nurse
Mrs Samantha Goode, Administrative Assistant
Ms Josephine Hayes, Research Study Coordinator
Mr Yue Ruan, Research Student
Dr Martin Tauschmann, Clinical Research Fellow
Dr Hood Thabit, Clinical Research Fellow
Dr Malgorzata Wilinska, Research Associate
Dr Lia Bally, Visiting Clinical Fellow
Professor David Dunger
Dr Carlo Acerini
Dr Mark Evans
Professor Helen Murphy
Artificial Pancreas, Type 1 Diabetes, Type 2 Diabetes, Insulin Therapy, Modelling, Simulations
JDRF, Diabetes UK, EME NIHR, NIH, FP7, Helmsley Trust
Plain English Summary of Research
Type 1 diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in children. Paediatric surveys report a rapid increase in number of cases. Type 1 diabetes is associated with life-long dependency on insulin administration. Poor glucose control during adolescence and young adulthood leads to an increased risk of diabetes Complications, e.g. eye, heart, kidney disease. Episodes of very low glucose levels are a major complications preventing near-normal glucose control. For many adults, youth and parents/carers, the fear of low glucose levels is often greater than the fear of long-term complications leading to elevated glucose levels.
Our research builds on recent technological advances. Use of insulin pumps is increasing. In adults, insulin pumps have been shown to improve overall glucose control and reduce the occurrence of severe hypoglycaemia, as compared to multiple daily injection therapy. Adults, young people and their families are becoming increasingly familiar with insulin pumps and many have integrated pumps into their daily practice. A more recent technology, real-time continuous glucose monitoring, enables greater understanding of glucose excursions, provides low and high glucose alarms, and facilitates more responsive insulin dose adjustments.
We develop and test the artificial pancreas which is an emerging technology promising to transform management of type 1 diabetes. The artificial pancreas delivers automatically insulin according to real-time sensor glucose levels, combining glucose sensor, insulin pump and a control algorithm, to achieve as much as possible functionality of a heathy pancreas. We also apply the artificial pancreas in type 2 diabetes when patients are hospitalised for diabetes-related or other reasons on the general ward.
Thabit H, Tauschmann M, Allen JM, Leelarathna L, Hartness S, Wilinska ME, Acerini CL, Dellweg S, Benesch C, Heinemann L, Mader JK, Holzer M, Kojzar H, Exall J, Yong J, Pichierri J, Barnard KD, Kollman C, Cheng P, Hidmarsh PC, Campbell FM, Arnolds S, Pieber TR, Evans ML, Dunger DB, Hovorka R; APCam Consortium; AP@home Consortium. (2015). Home Use of an Artificial Beta Cell in Type 1 Diabetes. N Engl J Med 2015 Nov 26;373(22):2129-40. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1509351. Epub 2015 Sep 17. PMID: 26379095.
Thabit H, Lunina-Solomon A, Stadler M, Leelarathna L, Walkinshaw E, Pernet A, Allen JM, Iqbal A, Choudhary P, Kumareswaran K, Nodale M, Nisbet C, Wilinksa ME, Barnard KD, Dunger DB, Heller SR, Amiel SA, Evans ML, Hovorka R. (2014). Home use of closed-loop insulin delivery for overnight glucose control in adults with type 1 diabetes: a 4-week, multicentre, randomised crossover study. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2014 Sep;2(9):701-9. doi: 10.1016/S2213-8587(14)70114-7. Epub 2014 Jun 16. PMID: 24943065. PMCID: PMC4165604.
Leelarathna L, Dellweg S, Mader JK, Allen JM, Benesh C, Doll W, Ellmerer M, Hartnell S, Heinemann L, Kojzar H, Michalweski L, Nodale M, Thabit H, Wilinska ME, Pieber TR, Arnolds S, Evans ML, Hovorka R; AP@home Consotium. (2014). Day and night home closed-loop insulin delivery in adults with type 1 diabetes: three-center randomized crossover study. Diabetes Care. 2014 Jul;37(7):1931-7. doi: 10.2337/dc13-2911. PMID: 24963110.
Hovorka R, Elleri D, Thabit H, Allen JM, Leelarathna L, El-Khairi R, Kumareswaran K, Caldwell K, Calhoun P, Kollman C, Murphy HR, Acerini CL, Wilinska ME, Noldale M, Dunger DB. (2014). Overnight closed-loop insulin delivery in young people with type 1 diabetes: a free-living, randomized clinical trial. Diabetes Care. 2014;37(5):1204-11. doi: 10.2337/dc13-2644. PMID: 24757227. PMCID: PMC3994941.
Leelarathna L, English SW, Thabit H, Caldwell K, Allen JM, Kumareswaran K, Wilinska ME, Nodale M, Mangat J, Evans ML, Burnstein R, Hovorak R. (2013). Feasibility of fully automated closed-loop glucose control using continuous subcutaneous glucose measurements in critical illness: a randomized controlled trial. Crit Care. 2013 Jul 24;17(4):R159. doi: 10.1186/cc12838. PMID: 23883613. PMCID: PMC4056260.