Novel fatty acid molecule can be against diabetes

The researchers found that a class of lipid harmful metabolic changes can prevent or reverse some of the symptoms of diabetes and similar mice. These molecules may be used to treat yourself, or they will lead researchers to discover new drugs.


Fat mice help researchers found lipids, may prevent or treat diabetes.

Lipids, including fat and a family of related chemical molecule can cause clogged arteries and heart attacks. However, due to the role of being careful tracking of a particular protein, the researchers have discovered a class of lipid harmful metabolic changes can prevent or reverse some of the symptoms of diabetes and similar mice. These molecules may be used to treat yourself, or they will lead researchers to discover new drugs.

Although many lipids are useful, but some of them are not good reputation, particularly certain fatty acids, i.e., carbon atoms and hydrogen atoms in the long chain. For example, in the processing of foods unhealthy trans-fatty acids can be increased cholesterol levels, and studies have found that obesity and diabetes, and increased amount of fatty acids in the blood related.

The study started from the benefits of fatty acids. Its origins can be traced back to the 1990s. The researchers found suffering from obesity or type 2 diabetes fat cells often carry very low GLUT4, which is a protein helps cells absorb sugar. “It’s very important to control blood sugar,” molecular endocrinologist at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Barbara Kahn said. In order to study the role of this protein, she and her colleagues changed gene in mice so that their fat cells produce extra GLUT4, and gulps sugar.

These mice puzzled scientists ever since. Although they are obese, but they are healthy rodents have the same blood glucose and insulin levels. The emergence of GLUT4 additional trigger fat cells produce additional lipids. Kahn and her colleagues speculate that some fats are beneficial, and explains healthy metabolism in rodents.

In order to find these mysterious molecules, Kahn’s team together Salk Institute for Biological Studies lipid biologist Alan Saghatelian and colleagues. Mass spectrometry using a known technique which can measure and determine the molecule in a sample, four kinds of lipids researchers identified yielding GLUT4 richer in mice, and to decipher their formula.

However, these lipid molecules in the standard catalog nowhere to be found. “We are dealing with something new,” Saghatelian said. In all of the lipids, the researchers found 16 closely related fatty acids, which are called FAHFAs, hydroxy fatty acid or a fatty acid.

Sort out the experiment shows that the metabolism of the molecule are useful. For example, in one experiment, the researchers forced to normal mice fed FAHFAs, these mice had been fed a high-fat foods and resistance to insulin, which means that they can not, as usual, to respond to the hormone. These animals blood sugar dips, and produce glucose tolerance, or the ability to absorb molecules. “Animals are available FAHFAs to treat diabetes,” Saghatelian said.

FAHFAs not limited to mice. Kahn and Saghatelian team tested patients from insulin resistance (and therefore there is a high risk of diabetes) and remain sensitive to insulin in patients with blood and fat. The researchers in this week’s journal Cell reports, one FAHFA species in blood levels of insulin resistance group is less than 40%.

Not involved in this work, a cell biologist at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, said Alan Saltiel, researchers have rarely found a new family of lipids. Lipids seem to be able to stimulate the biochemical pathways, researchers have detected a diabetes drug target, he said. If further studies confirm this mechanism, FAHFAs may indicate that researchers can use the new method modifying the way.

An interesting question is whether the level of recovery FAHFA help prevent or treat diabetes. The researchers found that FAHFAs in a variety of foods, including apples, egg yolks, beef and chicken. However, Kahn said, it is recommended that people try to change their diet to consume more molecules, is premature. Even munching fatty acids are also no use, their findings may still lead to new treatments. Research and destruction FAHFAs produce enzymes that may help researchers develop drugs to regulate the amount of fatty acids in the body.

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