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Scripps Research scientist receives $1 million research grant from Novo Nordisk
Date:11/8/2011

JUPITER, FL, November 8, 2011 Andrew Butler, an associate professor in The Scripps Research Institute's Department of Metabolism and Aging, has been awarded one million dollars in funding over the next two years to further his research into a novel protein with the potential to improve the understanding and future treatment of diabetes.

The award is notable in that it comes not from the US National Institutes of Health but from Novo Nordisk, an international healthcare company based in Denmark recognized as a world-leader in diabetes treatment.

The Novo Nordisk Diabetes Innovation Award Program was launched in 2011 to help scientists substantiate early research efforts that could result in new treatment options for diabetes and obesity.

Butler's two-year research project, entitled the "Investigation of a Novel Peptide Hormone in Diabetes Treatment," was selected from more than 80 submitted proposals from US and Canadian research institutions.

The research involves a peptide hormone secreted by the liver called adropin. Animal models have shown that peptide hormones play an important role in regulating glucose levels and fatty acid metabolism and that irregular function of these hormones can have a direct effect on an individual's risk of developing obesity and/or diabetes.

"We were studying animal models of insulin resistance as precursor to type 2 diabetes, when we came across adropin," Butler said. "We found it provocative that this particular peptide hormone was distributed in the brain, liver, and pancreasthree tissues that are of great interest to those of us in the diabetes research field."

Butler noted that adropin seems to play a role in maintaining normal insulin sensitivitywhereby only a relatively small amount of insulin is needed to maintain regular blood glucose levels. In type 2 diabetes, insulin sensitivity is often blunted, which means that the normal amounts of insulin produced by the body
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Contact: Mika Ono
mikaono@scripps.edu
858-784-2052
Scripps Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

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