In a recent study, researchers from the University of Aberdeen, Universities of Cambridge and University Michigan find that drugs used to treat obesity can also benefit people with type 2 diabetes.
The study is published in Molecular Metabolism. It explains how this benefit for type 2 diabetes is achieved by acting in the brain.
In the study, the team has found that drug Lorcaserin can modify the activity of neurons that regulate blood glucose levels. In this way, the drug can help control type 2 diabetes.
Lorcaserin is often prescribed to help people lose weight. It works by regulating how hungry one feels.
However, researchers have discovered that the drug can also reduce glucose levels in the body and increase the body’s cells sensitivity to insulin.
When the body fails to produce enough insulin or the body’s cells fail to react to insulin, the situation leads to Type 2 diabetes.
This means that glucose remains in the blood rather than being used as fuel for energy.
One researcher of the study explained that current drugs for type 2 diabetes improve symptoms of this disease by acting in the body.
This obesity drug lorcaserin can act in the brain to improve type 2 diabetes.
Lorcaserin targets important brain hormones called pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) peptides, which are responsible for regulating appetite.
It also sends messages telling us we are full and no longer need to eat, leading to weight loss, the POMC hormones also activate a different brain circuit that helps keep our blood glucose in check.
The current discovery is important because type 2 diabetes is an incredibly prevalent disease in the modern world and new treatment choices are needed.
In the future, more research is needed, but these promising findings provide a completely new direction for type 2 diabetes drug treatment.
They may offer hope to individuals struggling with this disease.
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