Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Scientists discover a natural molecule to treat type 2 diabetes: Molecule mimics some effect of physical exercise

Date:
May 12, 2014
Source:
Université Laval
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a natural molecule that could be used to treat insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. The molecule, a derivative of omega-3 fatty acids, mimics some of the effects of physical exercise on blood glucose regulation.

A natural molecule has been found with the potential to treat insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. The molecule, a derivative of omega-3 fatty acids, mimics some of the effects of physical exercise on blood glucose regulation.
Credit: © Nenov Brothers / Fotolia

Researchers at the Université Laval Faculty of Medicine, the Quebec Heart and Lung Institute Research Center, and the Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods have discovered a natural molecule that could be used to treat insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. The molecule, a derivative of omega-3 fatty acids, mimics some of the effects of physical exercise on blood glucose regulation.

Related Articles


The details of the discovery made by Professor André Marette and his team are published today in Nature Medicine.

It has been known for some time that omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce insulin resistance caused by a diet high in saturated fat. In their earlier work, André Marette and his colleagues had linked these effects to a bioactive lipid called protectin D1. In investigating further, they discovered that another member of the same family named protectin DX (PDX) triggers the production and release of interleukin 6 (IL-6) in muscle cells, a response that also occurs during physical exercise. "Once in the bloodstream, IL-6 controls glucose levels in two ways: it signals to the liver to reduce glucose production and acts directly on the muscles to increase glucose uptake," explains the researcher who is also Scientific Director of Université Laval's Institute of Nutrition and Functional Foods.

The researchers used transgenic mice lacking the IL-6 gene to demonstrate the link between PDX and IL-6. PDX had very little effect on the control of blood glucose in these animals. In similar tests conducted on obese diabetic rats, PDX was shown to dramatically improve responsiveness to insulin, the hormone which regulates blood glucose. "The mechanism of action described for PDX represents a new therapeutic strategy for improving glucose control," proposes the researcher. "Its efficacy may be comparable with that of certain drugs currently prescribed to control glycemia."

Even though PDX appears to mimic the effect of physical exercise by triggering IL-6 secretion in the muscles, André Marette warns that it is not a substitute for physical activity. "Exercise has cardiovascular and other hormonal benefits that go well beyond its metabolic effects on the muscles," adds the researcher whose work is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Canadian Diabetes Association.

Professor Marette and Université Laval have filed a patent application for PDX and its therapeutic applications. "For us, the next step is to demonstrate the antidiabetic effects in humans and determine the receptor through which PDX acts."

In addition to André Marette, the study is authored by Phillip White, Philippe St-Pierre, Alexandre Charbonneau, Patricia Mitchell, Emmanuelle St-Amand, and Bruno Marcotte.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Phillip J White, Philippe St-Pierre, Alexandre Charbonneau, Patricia L Mitchell, Emmanuelle St-Amand, Bruno Marcotte, André Marette. Protectin DX alleviates insulin resistance by activating a myokine-liver glucoregulatory axis. Nature Medicine, 2014; DOI: 10.1038/nm.3549

Cite This Page:

Université Laval. "Scientists discover a natural molecule to treat type 2 diabetes: Molecule mimics some effect of physical exercise." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 May 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140512112547.htm>.
Université Laval. (2014, May 12). Scientists discover a natural molecule to treat type 2 diabetes: Molecule mimics some effect of physical exercise. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140512112547.htm
Université Laval. "Scientists discover a natural molecule to treat type 2 diabetes: Molecule mimics some effect of physical exercise." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/05/140512112547.htm (accessed December 17, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

When You Lose Weight, This Is Where The Fat Goes

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) — Can fat disappear into thin air? New research finds that during weight loss, over 80 percent of a person's fat molecules escape through the lungs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

Flu Outbreak Closing Schools in Ohio

AP (Dec. 17, 2014) — A wave of flu illnesses has forced some Ohio schools to shut down over the past week. State officials confirmed one pediatric flu-related death, a 15-year-old girl in southern Ohio. (Dec. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Feeling Young Might Mean A Longer Life Span

Feeling Young Might Mean A Longer Life Span

Newsy (Dec. 16, 2014) — A study published in JAMA shows that people who feel younger than their chronological age might actually live longer than those who feel old. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
2016 Olympic Waters Feature 'Super Bacteria' Researchers Say

2016 Olympic Waters Feature 'Super Bacteria' Researchers Say

Newsy (Dec. 16, 2014) — Researchers found the bacteria Klebsiella pneumoniae Carbapenemase in the water where the 2016 Olympics is supposed to take place. 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:

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