Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Antidepressant could do double duty as diabetes drug, study shows

Date:
December 14, 2012
Source:
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
Summary:
Researchers have discovered that the commonly used antidepressant drug paroxetine could also become a therapy for the vascular complications of diabetes.

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston researchers have discovered that the commonly used antidepressant drug paroxetine could also become a therapy for the vascular complications of diabetes.

The scientists made their discovery after screening 6,766 clinically used drugs and pharmacologically active substances.

"We developed this assay and used it to test literally every single existing drug and a good selection of other biologically active compounds," said UTMB professor Csaba Szabo, senior author of a paper on the research published online by Diabetes. "We were quite surprised when paroxetine came out as an active compound -- a result, we later determined, of what seems to be a completely new effect unrelated to its antidepressant actions and not shared by any other known antidepressant drug."

The initial screening process tested the ability of different compounds to protect the cells that make up the inner linings of blood vessels from the destructive effects of the high sugar levels produced by diabetes, known as hyperglycemia. In people with diabetes, hyperglycemia causes these endothelial cells to generate toxic molecules known as reactive oxygen species (ROS), which ravage blood-vessel linings and lead to diabetic endothelial dysfunction, the key factor in such destructive diabetic complications as heart attacks, strokes, retinopathy, nephropathy and neuropathy.

In subsequent test-tube studies, researchers found that paroxetine -- which is sold as an antidepressant under the trade name "Paxil" -- prevents hyperglycemia-initiated ROS damage to endothelial cells in two ways. First, it directly reduces concentrations of superoxide, a powerful ROS. Second, it suppresses superoxide production by mitochondria, tiny structures whose real job is making the energy-transfer molecules needed for most cellular processes. In a hyperglycemic environment, mitochondria are cells' biggest source of superoxide. According to the researchers' findings, paroxetine inhibits this activity without interfering with the mitochondria's vital normal function.

Further experiments yielded still more evidence that paroxetine protects endothelial cells under hyperglycemic conditions. Reactive oxygen species cause significant damage to DNA, RNA and proteins, but cell-culture experiments showed that paroxetine significantly reduced this effect. The drug had similarly beneficial results when tested on rat "aortic rings" -- small pieces of blood vessel kept alive with tissue-culture techniques. When treated with the vasodilator acetylcholine, these rings dilated just as if they were still part of a functioning circulatory system; endothelial dysfunction caused by diabetic hyperglycemia normally interferes with this function, but paroxetine restored it.

Finally, the researchers tested paroxetine in rats that had been injected with streptozotocin, a chemical that induces diabetes. The animals given paroxetine developed hypoglycemia, but like the aortic rings, their arteries retained the ability to dilate -- an indication that the drug had prevented damage to their epitheliums.

"The future potential of this study is that we may be able to 're-purpose' paroxetine for the experimental therapy of diabetic cardiac complications," Szabo said. "We'll need to carefully characterize its safety profile in diabetic patients, but I think there's definite potential here."

Other authors of the Diabetes paper include instructor Dr. Domokos Gerφ, research fellow Petra Szoleczy, postdoctoral fellow Kunihiro Suzuki, postdoctoral fellow Katalin Mσdis, faculty associate Dr. Gabor Olαh and postdoctoral fellow Ciro Colletta. This research was supported by the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, the American Heart Association and the James W. McLaughlin Endowment.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D. Gero, P. Szoleczky, K. Suzuki, K. Modis, G. Olah, C. Coletta, C. Szabo. Cell-Based Screening Identifies Paroxetine as an Inhibitor of Diabetic Endothelial Dysfunction. Diabetes, 2012; DOI: 10.2337/db12-0789

Cite This Page:

University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "Antidepressant could do double duty as diabetes drug, study shows." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 December 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121214091616.htm>.
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. (2012, December 14). Antidepressant could do double duty as diabetes drug, study shows. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121214091616.htm
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. "Antidepressant could do double duty as diabetes drug, study shows." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/12/121214091616.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) — Residents of Sierra Leone's capital voice their fears as the Ebola virus sweeps through west Africa. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) — Herman Goldman has worked at the same lighting store for almost 75 years. Find out his secrets to a happy, productive life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) — Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) — Nancy Writebol, an American missionary who contracted Ebola, is apparently getting better, according to her husband. The outbreak, however, is not. Video provided by Newsy
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