A group of Japanese scientists has used gene therapy to deliver three insulin transcription factors, MafA, PDX-1, and NeuroD, to the livers of diabetic mice. As a result, the mice experienced an increase in insulin gene expression and insulin production, raising the possibility that this could eventually be used to treat diabetes. The research appears as the "Paper of the Week" in the April 15 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry, an American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology journal.
Diabetes, which is marked by high blood-sugar levels, results when the body is unable to produce a sufficient amount of insulin or when it is unable to use insulin properly. There are several ways to restore normal blood sugar levels, including administration of insulin or pancreas and islet transplantation. However, the former involves daily injections and the latter requires life-long immunosuppressive therapy and is limited by tissue supply.
An alternative way to increase the amount of insulin circulating in the body is to enhance insulin gene transcription which in turn results in an increase in the production of insulin. One possible way to do this is by increasing the body’s production of transcription factors, the molecules that are in charge of turning gene transcription on and off.
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For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
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MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.
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