Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stem Cell Research Uncovers Mechanism For Type 2 Diabetes

Date:
February 22, 2009
Source:
Burnham Institute
Summary:
Taking clues from their stem cell research, investigators have discovered that a signaling pathway involved in normal pancreatic development is also associated with type 2 diabetes.

Taking clues from their stem cell research, investigators at the University of California San Diego (UC San Diego) and Burnham Institute for Medical Research (Burnham) have discovered that a signaling pathway involved in normal pancreatic development is also associated with type 2 diabetes. Their findings could provide a potential new target for therapy.

Pamela Itkin-Ansari, Ph.D., assistant adjunct professor at the UC San Diego School of Medicine and Burnham; Fred Levine, M.D., Ph.D., professor and director of the Sanford Children's Health Research Center at Burnham, and colleagues showed that the Wnt signaling pathway is up-regulated in insulin producing cells of pancreases from adults with type 2 diabetes.

"It is now clear that progenitor cells, with the capacity to become insulin producing cells, reside in the adult pancreas," said Dr. Itkin-Ansari. "The key to harnessing those cells to treat diabetes is to understand the signaling pathways that are active in the pancreas under both normal and disease conditions. In the course of that research we found that Wnt signaling activity, which plays a critical role in the development of the pancreas, re-emerges in type 2 diabetes."

The Wnt signaling pathway – a series of protein interactions that control several genes –plays a role in normal development, as well as cancer, in many tissues. In this study, the scientists compared the expression of different proteins in the Wnt pathway in the pancreas from adults with type 2 diabetes and those from healthy individuals. The researchers discovered that cells from those without the disease had low levels of beta-catenin, a protein that enters cell nuclei and activates certain genes. Beta cells from people with type 2 diabetes had increased levels of the protein.

Activation of the Wnt pathway also up-regulates the expression of c-myc, which has been implicated in the destruction of insulin-producing beta cells. Significantly, Wnt signaling was also apparent in obese mice well before they developed symptoms, indicating that Wnt may be an important factor leading to Type 2 diabetes.

The collaborative effort between UC San Diego and Burnham is part of the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine, is made up of UC San Diego, Burnham, The Scripps Research Institute and the Salk Institute in La Jolla. The Sanford Consortium was founded in 2006 to marshal the intellectual resources of four world leaders in life sciences research, bringing scientists from each institution together to conduct joint research and training programs in stem cell research.

This study was funded by grants from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the JW Kieckhefer Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Burnham Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Lee et al. Islet Specific Wnt Activation in Human Type II Diabetes. Experimental Diabetes Research, 2008; 20081 DOI: 10.1155/2008/728763

Cite This Page:

Burnham Institute. "Stem Cell Research Uncovers Mechanism For Type 2 Diabetes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212171947.htm>.
Burnham Institute. (2009, February 22). Stem Cell Research Uncovers Mechanism For Type 2 Diabetes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212171947.htm
Burnham Institute. "Stem Cell Research Uncovers Mechanism For Type 2 Diabetes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090212171947.htm (accessed April 24, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) A disease that has killed more than six million cave-dwelling bats in the United States is on the move and wildlife biologists are worried. White Nose Syndrome, discovered in New York in 2006, has now spread to 25 states. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) That little voice telling you to exercise, get in shape and get healthy is probably coming from your boss. More companies are beefing up wellness programs to try and cut down their health care costs. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) The Food and Drug Administration wants to crack down on the use of e-cigarettes, banning the sale of the product to minors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'

Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'

AP (Apr. 23, 2014) A legally blind Michigan man is 'seeing something new every day' thanks to a high-tech retinal implant procedure. He's one of the first in the country to receive a 'bionic eye' since the federal government approved the surgery. (April 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins