Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


New Mechanism May Explain Genetic Susceptibility to Diabetes

New Mechanism Regulating Insulin Secretion May Explain Genetic Susceptibility To Diabetes

Media release

Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery
A Centre of Research Excellence hosted by The University of Auckland

and

Faculty of Medical and Health Science The University of Auckland

4 February 2013

New mechanism regulating insulin secretion may explain genetic susceptibility to diabetes

New Zealand research revealing a new mechanism for how glucose stimulates insulin secretion may provide a new explanation for how a gene that makes people more susceptible to diabetes – called TCF7L2 – actually contributes to the disease.

“It has long been known that insulin is secreted from beta-cells in the pancreas, in response to rising blood glucose levels, and that the insulin in turn controls glucose levels,” explains team leader Professor Peter Shepherd from the Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery and The University of Auckland. “However the mechanisms controlling insulin secretion have not been fully understood.”

The latest research in Professor Shepherd’s laboratory has revealed the missing link in a series of chemical signals by which glucose stimulates insulin secretion from beta-cells. The scientists found that a signalling molecule called cyclic-AMP acts to stabilise beta-catenin, a protein they show has an important role in regulating beta-cell function, including the release of insulin in response to glucose.

“This is important as Type-2 diabetes is increasing to epidemic proportions worldwide. It is caused by defective insulin release from beta-cells, and the resulting failure to control blood glucose levels. In order to understand the disease it’s important to learn about the mechanism that control insulin secretion,” says lead researcher Dr Emmanuelle Cognard, also from The University of Auckland.

This newly discovered signalling pathway may explain how one of the major diabetes susceptibility genes, called TCF7L2, can impair insulin secretion, as TCF7L2 redirects beta-catenin away from the cell surface and so would reduce the effect of beta-catenin on insulin secretion. The research is likely to influence the way new drugs to treat Type-2 diabetes are designed.

The research, which was funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand, has been published in the February 2013 issue of the Biochemical Journal.

Notes

The Maurice Wilkins Centre is New Zealand’s Centre of Research Excellence for the discovery of new treatments and diagnostics for human disease. It brings together leading biologists, chemists, and computer scientists to target serious diseases, focusing on infectious disease, cancer and diabetes. It includes researchers with world-class reputations for designing new drugs for these diseases, several of which are in clinical trials.

The Maurice Wilkins Centre is hosted by The University of Auckland and incorporates researchers from six New Zealand Universities, three Crown Research Institutes and a private research institute: The University of Auckland, University of Otago, Victoria University, University of Waikato, University of Canterbury, Massey University, Industrial Research Limited, Plant & Food Research, AgResearch, and the Malaghan Institute of Medical Research.

www.mauricewilkinscentre.org

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Must Sell 20 Petrol Stations: Z Cleared To Buy Caltex Assets

Z Energy is allowed to buy the Caltex and Challenge! petrol station chains but must sell 19 of its retail sites and one truck-stop, the Commerce Commission has ruled in a split decision that acknowledges possible retail price coordination between fuel retailers occurs in some regions. More>>

ALSO:

Huntly: Genesis Extends Life Of Coal-Fuelled Power Station To 2022

Genesis Energy will keep its two coal and gas-fired units at Huntly Power Station operating until 2022, having previously said they'd be closed by 2018, after wringing a high price from other electricity generators who wanted to keep them as back-up. More>>

ALSO:

Dammed If You Do: Ruataniwha Irrigation Scheme Hits Farmer Uptake Targets

Enough Hawke's Bay farmers have signed up for water from the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme for it to go ahead as long as a cornerstone institutional capital investor can be found to back it, its regional council promoter announced. More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: OCR Stays At 2.25%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2.25 percent, in a decision traders had said could go either way, while predicting inflation will pick up as the slump in oil prices washes out of the data and capacity pressures start to build in the economy. More>>

ALSO:

Export Values Down: NZ Posts Biggest Annual Trade Deficit In 7 Years

New Zealand has recorded its biggest annual trade deficit since April 2009, reflecting weaker prices of agricultural commodities such as dairy products, beef and lamb, and increased imports of vehicles and machinery. More>>

ALSO:

Currency Events: NZ's New $5 Note Wins International Banknote Award

New Zealand’s new Brighter Money $5 note has been named Banknote of the Year in a prestigious international competition. The $5 note was awarded the IBNS Banknote of the Year title at the International Bank Note Society’s annual meeting. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news