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A New study Throws Light On The Growth & Functions Of Insulin Producing Beta Cells

The latest study that was lead by Joslin Diabetes Centre throws much needed light on how insulin-producing beta cells grow and function. These findings// they hope will help in new treatments for people with diabetes.

The Joslin Diabetes Centre in Boston, have conducted a study that now proves conclusively that two receptors in the insulin-producing beta cell do not affect in the developmental growth, which was much against a long-held hypothesis in diabetes research. This finding would help scientists in their efforts to isolate the growth factors that do stimulate beta cell growth and to understand the defects in insulin production and the reduced secretion that cause diabetes.

These two receptors have always been a major focus of research on beta cell development. Scientists have always been seeking ways to promote the growth of these essential insulin-producing cells in diabetes patients. The past two studies conducted by Joslin, the insulin receptor, a protein that mediates the action of insulin, and the receptor for insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), a hormone, both of which were suggested as being critical for mediating islet/beta cell development and growth, were individually 'knocked out' in beta cells in genetically altered mice.

Rohit N. Kulkarni, M.D., Ph.D., Investigator at Joslin Diabetes Centre and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, who led the latest study and was lead author in the two previous Joslin studies explained that the researchers were surprised to discover that the beta cells developed and grew normally without these receptors. He explained that previously when they knocked out one receptor at a time, the remaining receptor had compensated for the other since both are so similar. But Dr. Kulkarni, stated that this time round when they knocked out both at the same time they still didn’t find any defect in the developmental growth of beta cells. This he said made them conclude th
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