Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists find way to control sugars

Date:
September 27, 2012
Source:
Simon Fraser University
Summary:
Scientists have found that the intestinal enzymes responsible for processing starchy foods can be turned on and off, helping to better control those processes in people with Type 2 diabetes.

A study co-led by Simon Fraser University has found that the intestinal enzymes responsible for processing starchy foods can be turned on and off, helping to better control those processes in people with Type 2 diabetes.

Related Articles


The process, called "toggling," was discovered in the lab of SFU V-P Research and chemist Mario Pinto, who has designed inhibitors capable of regulating each of the four starch-digesting enzymes known as alpha-glucosidases. It could lead to several solutions for diabetics and those prone to obesity.

Three of these enzymes are responsible for generating glucose from starch, each in different ways. A fourth enzyme breaks down sucrose, also giving glucose. Occasionally one or more of the enzymes is missing, which also affects how glucose is created, Pinto explains.

"We wanted to determine whether we could control the release of glucose when starch is broken down in the body," says Pinto, whose work included characterizing each of the four enzymes.

Working with a consortium of scientists co-led by Purdue University's Bruce Hamaker, a professor of food science, Pinto says the inhibitors were found to selectively inhibit the enzymes and control starch breakdown.

That means it could be possible to provide the missing enzymes or develop new starches that will digest properly with the enzymes they do have. "It's all about control and using the molecular information we have to control those enzymes," he says.

Their findings have been published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

"Selectively inhibiting the enzymes offers the possibility of regulating and directing the release of glucose," says Pinto, noting the consortium of scientists approached the problem from chemical, structural, molecular and cellular perspectives.

The discovery could result in the control of blood glucose for Type 2 diabetes as well as other conditions. When enzymes are missing -- a common characteristic of a rare disease known as CSID -- Pinto says it may be possible to administer one, and design foods in certain ways that other enzymes can break down.

"This is a powerful piece of knowledge," adds Pinto, noting that in the future it may be possible to control the exact delivery of glucose at different points in the small intestine.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. B.-H. Lee, R. Eskandari, K. Jones, K. R. Reddy, R. Quezada-Calvillo, B. L. Nichols, D. R. Rose, B. R. Hamaker, B. M. Pinto. Modulation of Starch Digestion for Slow Glucose Release through "Toggling" of Activities of Mucosal -Glucosidases. Journal of Biological Chemistry, 2012; 287 (38): 31929 DOI: 10.1074/jbc.M112.351858

Cite This Page:

Simon Fraser University. "Scientists find way to control sugars." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120927104307.htm>.
Simon Fraser University. (2012, September 27). Scientists find way to control sugars. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120927104307.htm
Simon Fraser University. "Scientists find way to control sugars." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120927104307.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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