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article imageDiabetes causing proteins examined

By Tim Sandle     Nov 28, 2013 in Science
All mammals make this same protein called amylin, and it only differs a little bit from species to species. This difference can be enough for an animal to develop type 2 diabetes.
With animals that develop type 2 diabetes, a certain type of protein called amylin begins to aggregate in the pancreas into a plaque that kills the cells around them. As a result, the animal is unable to manufacture insulin.
One thing that highlights the way that some proteins aggregate and others do not is that people can develop type 2 diabetes, and so do cats. However, other animals like rats and dogs do not. Animal species that do not develop type 2 diabetes find a way to keep plaque from forming in their pancreas and disrupting insulin production. This has been shown through the novel use of a technique called two-dimensional infrared spectroscopy.
Type 2 diabetes is a metabolic disorder that is characterized by high blood glucose in the context of insulin resistance and relative insulin deficiency. The classic symptoms are excess thirst, frequent urination, and constant hunger. Type 2 diabetes makes up about 90% of cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is initially managed by increasing exercise and dietary modification. If blood glucose levels are not adequately lowered by these measures, medications such as metformin or insulin may be needed.
By looking into this scientists think that they can provide a target for new treatments for diabetes and other plaque-involved disease such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's.
These thoughts have been examined by researchers based at University of Wisconsin-Madison and published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The article is titled “Mechanism of IAPP amyloid fibril formation involves an intermediate with a transient -sheet.”
More about Diabetes, type 2 diabetes, Proteins, Medication
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