Potential target for Type 1 diabetes treatment
A world-first study by Monash University, in Melbourne, Australia has discovered a pathway to the regeneration of insulin in pancreatic stem cells, a major breakthrough toward new therapies to treat Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes.
Using the pancreas stem cells of a type 1 diabetic donor, researchers were able to effectively reactivate them to become insulin-expressing and functionally resemble beta-like cells through the use of a drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration but not currently licenced for diabetes treatment.
The study, by researchers, lead to a potential treatment option for insulin-dependent diabetes which is diagnosed in seven Australian children every day resulting in a lifetime testing of blood glucose and daily insulin injections, to replace the insulin no longer produced by a damaged pancreas. The findings are now published in theNature journal, Signal Transduction and Targeted Therapy.
The advances in the genetics of diabetes have brought a "greater understanding and along with it a resurgence of interest in the development of potential therapies," said researchers.
Patients rely on daily insulin injections to replace what would have been produced by the pancreas. Currently, the only other effective therapy requires pancreatic islet transplantation and while this has improved health outcomes for individuals with diabetes, transplantation relies on organ donors, so it has limited widespread use, ended researchers.
Reference: Nature journal, Signal Transduction and Targeted Therapy titled: Inhibition of pancreatic EZH2 restores progenitor insulin in T1D donor;DOI: 10.1038/s41392-022-01034-7.
B.Sc Life Sciences, M.Sc Biotechnology, B.Ed