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Animal study suggests that newborn period may be crucial time to prevent later diabetes
Date:11/2/2011

for beta cells to function properly. Beta cells produce insulin in the pancreas of mammals, including humans.

"In our study, giving exendin-4 during the newborn period had permanent beneficial effects on beta cells," said Pinney. "This could be important for people, in whom abnormal changes in infancy may irreversibly alter beta cells and lead to adult-onset diabetes. If we can establish that treating at-risk human babies with exendin-4 or a similar compound has corresponding effects, we may have a new preventive approach for type 2 diabetes."

Simmons and Pinney cautioned that much follow-up research remains to be done, such as investigating more of the basic biology and evaluating the genome-wide effects of exendin-4, before their research findings could translate into clinical use in children.


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Contact: John Ascenzi
Ascenzi@email.chop.edu
267-426-6055
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Source:Eurekalert

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