These new findings were published recently in the scientific journal Diabetes. The study has been partly financed with two EU grants from the sixth framework programme (EUGENE2 and EXGENESIS), which were recently awarded to an international network of researchers that includes the authors of the article.
The molecular mechanisms behind Type 2 diabetes are not fully known, but both hereditary and environmental factors are thought to contribute to its development. The prevalence and number of new cases of Type 2 diabetes are steadily increasing in the West, owing, it is thought, to the excessive calorie-rich diets and more sedentary nature of typical Western lifestyles.
The receptors in the muscle cells that were studied are called peroxisome proliferators-activated delta receptors (PFAAR) and they reside in the nucleus where they regulate a large number of enzymes involved in the cell's metabolism and energy production. Using human muscle cells cultivated in vitro, the researchers were able to show that drugs that bind to PFAAR increase the absorption of glucose in the muscle cells. The two experimental drugs tested in the study were GW501516 and GW0742. The trials demonstrate that the two drugs bind to PFAAR, which triggers a series of reactions within the cells. This, in turn, helps to boost glucose absorption into the cells. By specifically blocking certain processes in the cells, the scientists were also able to show t
Contact: Sabina Bossi