The Global Diabetes Alliance
The Global Diabetes Alliance (GDA) is a not-for-profit international alliance, established in 2007 and steered by a multinational collaborative panel of leading scientists in the field of diabetes. The GDA is forming a growing ‘virtual diabetes research community’, that is responding to the “tsunami” of diabetes, which threatens the well-being of millions of people. The GDA focuses on developing solid and unprecedented research projects directed at improving our understanding the natural history of diabetes, implementing preventive intervention and improving treatment outcomes especially for underserved populations.
History of GDA
The leading body for the GDA is composed of a core group of recognized leaders in diabetes research who have provided substantial in-kind resources to establish a rotating administrative hub and develop a growing ‘virtual GDA research community’ through the GDA website and e-communication.
At the 1st GDA Congress in Seattle, USA, in 2007, over 100 research scientists and clinicians from 20 countries on six continents attended to represent two-thirds of the world’s population. From 2007 – 2010, the GDA established Research Interest Groups that worked towards identifying current collaborative research projects. In October 2010, the second GDA Congress was held in Cairo, Egypt and attended by more than 300 research scientists and clinicians in which diverse oral and posters presentations and discussion panels were presented endorsing a growing collaboration among leading diabetes research scientists and clinicians.
The GDA has a Program Committee and a President of the Alliance. It also involves international Steering Committee (Representing the six WHO regions). There are five Research Interest Groups; Epidemiology and Genetics, Diabetes Registries, Obesity and Insulin Resistance, Behaviour and Education, Chronic Complications, Beta Cell Function and Acute Complications These groups coordinate their research work and in the current time research protocols are presented, two of which (Epidemiology and Genetics, Diabetes Registries) are initiated.
The scope of GDA:
Develop standardized protocols in diverse settings around the world by identifying local, regional, national research initiatives that can be expanded globally;
Establish a communication mechanism to highlight research projects and provide opportunity for research teams to be involved in standardized research protocols and contribute to the international data set;
Disseminate results and findings to help improve practice and support policy development.
Objectives & Goals
The main objective of the GDA is to forge the strongest possible response against the growing diabetes "tsunami". The key goal is to outline a collaborative, multidisciplinary scientific research agenda with a particular focus on underserved populations.
The specific aims of the GDA include interventions on different levels such as:
Development of protocols to execute a randomized clinical trial as a global demonstration project of community- and education-based life style intervention.
Developing standardized, feasible & simple tests for prediabetes or diabetes phenotypes.
Perform genetic profiling of subpopulations to test the hypothesis that polymorphisms affect outcome measures in the proposed intervention clinical trial.
Determine the impact of environmental changes such as infections, migration, acculturation and education.
Determine outcome of intervention and disseminate results
Membership and Management
GDA’s membership represents the 6 WHO regions. A core group of 30 research scientists provide leadership on Steering, Management and Senior Advisory committees to govern and support the operations of GDA. Senior-level diabetes research scientists provide leadership in Research Interest and Research Working groups and support opportunities for GDA members to be involved in the identification of research opportunities and collaborative research projects leading up to the GDA Congress every three years. Since 2007, the GDA has mobilized diabetes experts worldwide to provide leadership, manage risks and build its capacity to increase its membership, support collaborative research teams, and host two successful GDA congresses in 2007 and 2010. Other achievements include the progressive identification of multiple research opportunities and the recent endorsement of two priority projects to fill critical gaps in diabetes research: Type 1 Diabetes Diagnosis and Classification and Diabetes Registry and Surveillance Cohort
At its stage of organizational development, a priority for GDA is to build capacity to sustain its collaborative research efforts globally by transitioning from in-kind contributions to revenue generation through partnerships and sponsorships.
For further information and updates on the GDA