New Drug Discovered Which Can Completely Reverse Diabetes
All over the world, the incidence of people with diabetes has been rising since 1980, with 422 million people diagnosed 3 years back (and increasing ever since). The United States of America alone has experienced a substantial rise in the number of diabetics, with the number of Americans diagnosed going up from 5.5 million in 1980, to 22 million in 2014, which is an alarming 300+ percent increase in less than forty years.
A team of scientists, led by Stephanie Stanford at the California University, San Diego, is testing a solution in the form of a stand alone pill that aims to restore insulin sensitivity in diabetics. Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body’s response to insulin, the hormone which regulates sugar in our blood, becomes weak. A number of genetic & lifestyle factors will determine whether or not someone develops this type 2 diabetes in their life span.
Until today, drugs were unable to recreate the insulin signaling function in diabetics — instead, they approach the problem by focusing on how to filtering out excess glucose in the blood that is a result of the dysfunction. The stand alone drug, spoken about above, produced by Stanford’s team, on the other hand, hopes to achieve this function.
The drug inhibits an enzyme which is chemically known as ‘low molecular weight protein tyrosine phosphatase‘ (LMPTP), which is understood to contribute to the reduction in cell vulnerability to insulin. With low LMPTP activity, the drug activates insulin receptors on the outer of cells — particularly those in the liver — which helps restore the cell’s ability to manage excess sugar. When the body can once again get control of it’s blood sugar levels, the condition of Type 2 diabetes is apparently reversed.
The researchers experimented by feeding lab mice a high-fat diet that made them obese, which eventually caused them to inhibit high blood glucose levels. The drug was tested on the mice on a regular basis & successfully brought back insulin sensitivity without causing any adverse side effects.
While the lab rat experiment results are encouraging, the team must continue testing the drug for safe human use, so clinical trials at homo sapien level are still some time away. But Stanford in the meanwhile are pursuing a new therapeutic strategy for treating type 2 diabetes based on these findings.
Diabetes reversal in patients has been seen before, however it has never been achieved through medication alone. So, if this drug is soon approved for safe use in humans it would be a truly revolutionary discovery that could save millions of lives.
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