A new organization of endocrinologists, focused on reducing complications from diabetes, has been formed. The Council for the Advancement of Diabetes Research and Education (CADRE) is underwritten by joint unrestricted educational grants from Aventis Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Pfizer Inc. Both firms offer diabetes therapies.

CADRE begins life with a survey of endocrinologists that suggests a re-evaluation of diabetes treatment algorithm. Eighty-one percent of endocrinologists who specialize in diabetes agree that a re-evaluation of the diabetes treatment algorithm would benefit patients, according to the survey. The survey sought to better understand and address why, despite the availability of 50 years of treatment advances, less than half of patients with type 2 diabetes, the more common form of the disease, have tight glycemic control. Poorly controlled diabetes can lead to serious, severely debilitating or fatal complications, such as blindness, kidney disease, heart disease and amputations.

The survey also found 70 percent believe patients would benefit from achieving a glycemic goal that is lower than what is currently recommended. This benefit is corroborated by recent data from the United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) that demonstrate no threshold for reducing the patient's glycemic levels in relation to reducing the patient's risk of developing diabetes complications.

``Based on current research, patients can reduce their risk of complications by achieving and maintaining the lowest glycemic control possible throughout their lifetime,'' said Derek LeRoith, M.D., Ph.D., CADRE co-chair.

This survey, conducted by Cozint, Inc. of Princeton, NJ, involved online surveys conducted nationwide among 100 diabetes-specialist endocrinologists. Interviews took place May 24 through June 1, 2001. The sample also demographically corresponds to known characteristics of U.S. endocrinologists as a whole. Please note that at the 95 percent confidence level, a margin of error of +/- 10 percentage points exists. The physician sample was drawn randomly from Cozint's master database that consists of over 400,000 U. S. physicians.

CADRE programs support, highlight and promote practical guidelines for patient education and management as well as cutting-edge research in diabetes pathophysiology and treatment. In conjunction with leading universities and medical associations, CADRE sponsors continuing medical education programs for physicians that are planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and Policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education. At this year's ADA meeting, CADRE is sponsoring ``Will Using Exogenous Insulin Earlier in the Disease Progression Prevent Vascular Disease in Diabetes,'' which features discussions of beta cell dysfunction and insulin deficiency; cardiovascular disease and diabetes; and management strategies involving earlier use of insulin.