Betatrophin: A Hormone that Controls Pancreatic β Cell Proliferation
Here is another excellent example of how science still has not researched the whole picture for diabetes. This study will be an ongoing story that will probably result in a new drug therapy. The nice part about this potential is that this hormone, unlike many of the current drugs, will actually allow for some repair of the pancreas.
Keep in mind that this is a rat study and as many of you know this may or may not translate to a human’s metabolism, with safety. We will keep you updated as there are many new findings in the field of cardiometabolic medicine.
Obviously even if this is a successful option for those experiencing adverse changes in their blood sugar levels it remains both prudent and obvious, diet and exercise remain the key factors that you can control.
- •Betatrophin causes a specific increase in pancreatic β cell replication
- •Betatrophin is a secreted protein expressed in liver and fat
- •The increase in β cell replication and mass improves glycemic control
Replenishing insulin-producing pancreatic β cell mass will benefit both type I and type II diabetics. In adults, pancreatic β cells are generated primarily by self-duplication. We report on a mouse model of insulin resistance that induces dramatic pancreatic β cell proliferation and β cell mass expansion. Using this model, we identify a hormone, betatrophin, that is primarily expressed in liver and fat. Expression of betatrophin correlates with β cell proliferation in other mouse models of insulin resistance and during gestation. Transient expression of betatrophin in mouse liver significantly and specifically promotes pancreatic β cell proliferation, expands β cell mass, and improves glucose tolerance. Thus, betatrophin treatment could augment or replace insulin injections by increasing the number of endogenous insulin-producing cells in diabetics.
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