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Mamaroneck Student Does His Part To Find Diabetes Cure

Michael Mancino developed diabetes at age 8.
Michael Mancino developed diabetes at age 8. Photo Credit: Rosemary Mancino
Michael Mancino and the Kids for the Cure club at Mamaroneck High School will host a gala benefit to support diabetes research.
Michael Mancino and the Kids for the Cure club at Mamaroneck High School will host a gala benefit to support diabetes research. Photo Credit: Kids for the Cure Club

MAMARONECK, N.Y. - A research lab is moving into phase two in its efforts to find a cure for Type 1 diabetes and Mamaroneck High School (MHS) student Michael Mancino is doing what he can to help.

Mancino, 17, and the Kids for the Cure club at MHS organized a benefit gala June 24 to raise money in support of the Massachusetts General Hospital Immunobiology Lab's research. Mancino was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was eight.

"One of my goals in life is that there is a cure in Michael's lifetime for this disease," Michael's mother Rosemary said.

Type I Diabetes is a chronic disease in which the pancreas doesn't produce insulin, a hormone needed to allow sugar to enter cells to produce energy. Type 2 diabetes, which is more common, occurs when the body becomes resistant to the effects of insulin or doesn't make enough of the hormone, according to the Mayo Clinic. There is no cure or preventative measure for Type I Diabetes.

"Everyday Michael must prick his fingers six times a day to check his blood sugar levels, manage his carbohydrate intake, adjust his insulin levels and live his life connected to a cell phone-size insulin pump which basically acts as his pancreas," Rosemary said. "If he is not vigilant about this, he runs the risk of life threatening issues. Not a fun way to live, especially as a kid or teen."

The research, led by Dr. Denise Faustman , is based on findings from treatment of mice with Type 1 Diabetes. The lab has shown that humans with the disease have bad T cells similar to those found in diabetic mice. They were able to permanently reverse the disease in those mice by eliminating defective white blood cells. The hypothesis is a similar approach may work with humans, too.

Tickets are $75 for adults and $60 for students and may be purchased by emailing Mancino at mmancino14@gmail.com, or at the door. You can also make a donation by visiting the Faustman Lab website . All proceeds go toward Faustman's research.

The gala will be held from 7 to 9:30 p.m. at Palmer Crossing, 1957 Palmer Ave. There will be dinner, live music and a raffle and silent auction. Items include Mets and Yankees tickets, lunch at Lusardi's and gift cards.

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