Navigation Links
Reprogramming cells to fight diabetes
Date:2/22/2013

PHILADELPHIA For years researchers have been searching for a way to treat diabetics by reactivating their insulin-producing beta cells, with limited success. The "reprogramming" of related alpha cells into beta cells may one day offer a novel and complementary approach for treating type 2 diabetes. Treating human and mouse cells with compounds that modify cell nuclear material called chromatin induced the expression of beta cell genes in alpha cells, according to a new study that appears online in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

"This would be a win-win situation for diabetics - they would have more insulin-producing beta cells and there would be fewer glucagon-producing alpha cells," says lead author Klaus H. Kaestner, Ph.D., professor of Genetics and member of the Institute of Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania. Type 2 diabetics not only lack insulin, but they also produce too much glucagon.

Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes are caused by insufficient numbers of insulin-producing beta cells. In theory, transplantation of healthy beta cells for type 1 diabetics in combination with immunosuppression to control autoimmunity - should halt the disease, yet researchers have not yet been able to generate these cells in the lab at high efficiency, whether from embryonic stem cells or by reprogramming mature cell types.

Alpha cells are another type of endocrine cell in the pancreas. They are responsible for synthesizing and secreting the peptide hormone glucagon, which elevates glucose levels in the blood.

"We treated human islet cells with a chemical that inhibits a protein that puts methyl chemical groups on histones, which - among many other effects - leads to removal of some histone modifications that affect gene expression," says Kaestner. "We then found a high frequency of alpha cells that expressed beta-cell markers, and even produced some insulin, after drug treatment.

Histones are protein complexes around which DNA strands are wrapped in a cell's nucleus.

The team discovered that many genes in alpha cells are marked by both activating- and repressing-histone modifications. This included many genes important in beta-cell function. In one state, when a certain gene is turned off, the gene can be readily activated by removing a modification that represses the histone.

"To some extent human alpha cells appear to be in a 'plastic' epigenetic state," explains Kaestner. "We reasoned we might use that to reprogram alpha cells towards the beta-cell phenotype to produce these much-needed insulin-producing cells."


'/>"/>

Contact: Karen Kreeger
karen.kreeger@uphs.upenn.edu
215-349-5658
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. A relationship between cancer genes and the reprogramming gene SOX2 discovered
2. New drug prevents spread of human prostate cancer cells
3. Tiny hitchhikers attack cancer cells
4. To prevent leukemias dreaded return, go for the stem cells
5. Scientists identify major source of cells defense against oxidative stress
6. Therapy exploits addiction of leukemia cells
7. IBN discovers human neural stem cells with tumor targeting ability
8. Leukaemia cells have a remembrance of things past
9. Small molecular bodyguards kill HPV-infected cancer cells by protecting tumor-suppressor
10. Research yields new clues to how brain cancer cells migrate and invade
11. Presence of fetal cells in women lowers risk of breast cancer but raises risk of colon cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Reprogramming cells to fight diabetes
(Date:2/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 08, 2016 , ... ... authorization with BASF Human Nutrition into the Food & Beverage and ... has been BASF’s channel partner throughout Canada and USA geographies east of the ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... Minn. (PRWEB) , ... February 08, 2016 , ... ... the BantamPro L top-load case packer for pouches, bags, and flow wrapped products ... to help co-packers and specialty product manufacturers step up to semi-automatic or fully-automatic ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 08, 2016 , ... ... community enrichment program serving the greater Venice, FL area, has initiated a fundraiser ... in a car accident just four days after Christmas. To support this beautiful ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... FileHold's document management ... DocuSyst provides a cloud hosted environment for FileHold software that is pay per ... 3rd party applications using the FileHold web services API. DocuSyst also advises clients ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... Joshua Rosenthal, ... how healthcare companies can use newly released government data on populations and physicians ... and intervene and capture the value they create to succeed in new economic ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)... LOS ANGELES , Feb. 5, 2016  Redwood ... of a new product designed to help women balance ... oral strip delivery technology. Jason Cardiff ... company will be able to help the millions of ... suffer from the effects of imbalanced hormones. Our research ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... -- ivWatch, a medical devices company, is one of five recipients ... Terry McAuliffe,s office. ivWatch will be receiving the ... event to be held at the Science Museum of ... business that have made significant contributions to science. ... ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... in Alabama seeking prostate care with ... have to travel out of state. Vituro Health ... of Alabama to provide a total prostate management program ... Alabama is known throughout the ... using many different modalities. They are the largest and one ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: