Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Chemically Modified Insulin Is Available More Quickly

03.01.2017

Replacing a hydrogen atom by an iodine atom in insulin, the hormone retains its efficacy but is available more rapidly to the organism. Researchers at the University of Basel were able to predict this effect based on computer simulations and then confirm it with experiments. The results have been published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

Insulin is formed in the pancreas and regulates the blood glucose level. In the body it is stored as a zinc-bound complex of six identical molecules, called a hexamer. However, the physiologically active form is a single insulin monomer. Only when the body requires insulin the hexamer divides into monomers available for blood sugar regulation.


Binding of the insulin analog (green) to the receptor (light blue). The receptor’s surface is shown in transparent gray.

University of Basel, Department of Chemistry

Researchers attempt to control this disassembly process by developing artificial insulin preparations, in order to optimize clinical treatment of diabetes mellitus. By means of chemical modifications, the release and availability of insulin can be improved. One possible approach is to strategically replace individual atoms in a targeted manner. This results in what is known as an insulin analog, which differs from natural insulin in both structure and properties.

Artificial insulin is released more rapidly

The team led by Professor Markus Meuwly from the Department of Chemistry at the University of Basel has investigated this process in collaboration with researchers from the USA and Australia. The researchers exchanged a single hydrogen atom by an iodine atom which modulates intermolecular interactions that resulted in more rapid insulin disassembly and release.

Introducing the iodine atom improved the insulins’ availability, while the affinity for the insulin receptor and the biological function remained unchanged when compared to the natural hormone. These advantageous properties were first predicted by a combination of quantum chemistry and molecular dynamics simulations. In a next step, the stability changes of the chemically modified insulin were directly probed by using crystallographic and nuclear magnetic resonance experiments which confirmed the computations.

Clinical application possible

The use of halogen atoms is a promising approach for compound optimization in medicinal chemistry. The results obtained for iodinated insulin demonstrate that the concept of chemical modification has also great potential in the field of protein engineering. A future clinical application of the insulin analog, which differs from natural insulin by only a single atom, is quite conceivable.

Original source

Krystel El Hage, Vijay Pandyarajan, Nelson B. Phillips, Brian J. Smith, John G. Menting, Jonathan Whittaker, Michael C. Lawrence, Markus Meuwly, Michael A. Weiss
Extending Halogen-Based Medicinal Chemistry to Proteins: Iodo-Insulin as a Case Study
Journal of Biological Chemistry (2016), doi: 10.1074/jbc.M116.761015

Further information

Prof. Dr. Markus Meuwly, University of Basel, Department of Chemistry, Tel. +41 61 207 38 21, email: m.meuwly@unibas.ch

Weitere Informationen:

https://www.unibas.ch/en/News-Events/News/Uni-Research/Chemically-Modified-Insul...

Olivia Poisson | Universität Basel

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht New catalyst controls activation of a carbon-hydrogen bond
21.11.2017 | Emory Health Sciences

nachricht The main switch
21.11.2017 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Previous evidence of water on mars now identified as grainflows

21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope completes final cryogenic testing

21.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New catalyst controls activation of a carbon-hydrogen bond

21.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>