Engineer father builds artificial pancreas for his Type 1 diabetic son

SAN DIEGO — According to American Diabetes Association almost 1.4 million Americans are diagnosed with diabetes each year, DamnGeeky reports. This estimated figure includes considerable number of Type 1 diabetes cases. Type 1 diabetes (the condition where pancreas stop producing insulin) is diagnosed more in young children and third-grader Andrew Calabrese is just one of them.

PHOTO: Andrew Calabrese wears a robotic pancreas built by his dad, Jason, to help regulate Andrew’s insulin levels. Photo provided.

Calabrese PancreasSince Andrew was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and his pancreas gave up on him, his parents have wanted to do anything possible to make his battle with diabetes less disturbing. While Andrew’s mother Heidi set up a social support group to connect with other people and families battling the life-changing disease, his father Jason (software engineer by profession) built Andrew robotic pancreas that’ll help regulate his insulin levels.

He developed the artificial pancreas for his son using an open source project OpenAPS or Open Artificial Pancreas System. The program designed by Type 1 diabetic Dana Lewis assists anyone who wants to help fight Type 1 diabetes. Following the instructions and working almost two months, Jason hacked an old insulin pump to automatically provide insulin in response to Andrew’s blood sugar levels throughout the day and night (dosing for meals is done manually).

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