How your brain could help fix your diabetes

   Oct 7, 2:34 pm

Washington, Oct 7 (ANI): The cure for diabetes could be sitting in our brains, Japanese researchers say.

The AIST Institute in Tsukuba has discovered that using patients' neural stem cells can overcome shortage of insulin-producing cells without the need for gene transfer to treat diabetes.

Beta cells in the pancreas produce insulin, which regulates glucose levels.

The research has revealed how harvesting stem cells could overcome a lack of beta cell transplants from donors.

Diabetes is caused by a lack of insulin production by the pancreas and affects more than 200 million people worldwide.

There is currently no cure, leaving patients to rely on external supplies of insulin or treatments to alter levels of blood glucose.

The research, led by Dr Tomoko Kuwabara, focussed on developing methods for defining human stem cell differentiation, the process through which cells can be adapted to a specialized role, for use in cell replacement treatments.

"As diabetes is caused by the lack of a single type of cell the condition is an ideal target for cell replacement treatments," said Kuwabara.

"However donation shortages of pancreatic beta cells are a major hurdle to advancing this treatment. So a safe and easy way of using stem cells for obtaining new beta cells has been long awaited," he added.

The hippocampus and olfactory bulb, at the front of the brain provide an easily accessible tissue source for cells that could be transplanted directly into the pancreas. Normally neuronal cells do not produce high levels of insulin, pancreatic cells do.

However, once they had been transplanted into diabetic rats the cells not only started to express several key characteristics of pancreatic beta cells, but insulin production was increased and blood glucose levels were reduced.

The removal of the transplant increased levels of blood glucose, revealing that transplanting neural stem cells into the pancreas could be an effective treatment for diabetes.

The study has been published in EMBO Molecular Medicine. (ANI)

Here's how you can sharpen your senses Aug 28, 5:46 pm
Washington D.C., Aug 28 (ANI): A new study claims that mental focus can encourage learning mechanisms similar to physical training.
Full Story
U.S. varsity study says 4-days a week school can produce better academicians Aug 28, 4:40 pm
Washington D.C., Aug 28 (ANI): Here's a good news for students. A new study has claimed that shortening the school week to four days school can improve the academic performance of students.
Full Story
Purple potatoes can terminate colon cancer cells Aug 27, 5:40 pm
Washington D.C., Aug 27 (ANI): In a breakthrough discovery, researchers claim that purple potatoes can prevent the spread of colon cancer and terminate its stem cells.
Full Story
Heavy metal pollution may have contributed to some of largest extinction events Aug 26, 6:29 pm
Washington D.C., Aug 26 (ANI): A 415-million-year-old malformed fossil plankton has revealed that heavy metal pollution might have contributed to some of the world's largest extinction events.
Full Story
Comments