Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Insulin research builds on Nobel Laureate’s work

08.05.2006
Scientists have seen for the first time a key step in the complex molecular processes whereby pancreas cells release insulin into the bloodstream.

The breakthrough, which builds on earlier Nobel-Prize winning research, could have implications for the treatment of diabetes which is caused when not enough insulin is released by the pancreas to meet the body’s demands.

The team of scientists from the University of Manchester, Charite University in Berlin, and the University of Heidelberg say the findings could also be important in understanding other diseases, as hormone and protein secretion is an important function of all types of cell.

“Large numbers of proteins, including hormones such as insulin, are constantly being produced by our cells and carry out essential functions in the body,” explained Dr Martin Pool, based in Manchester’s Faculty of Life Sciences.

“In order for them to work, these proteins have to be transported to the right place and it is this process – of fundamental importance to all living organisms – that we are interested in.”

Dr Pool’s work – to be published in the highly respected journal Science – is based on a 30-year-old hypothesis of how proteins are transported across cell membranes and directed to their correct location.

That hypothesis was devised and proven by Dr Gunter Blobel and led to him receiving the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1999.

But the Anglo-German team has taken Dr Blobel’s investigations a step further as they have been able to physically see the processes at work using sophisticated electron microscopes.

“Previous work had provided a framework of how the system worked but we were limited to models and cartoons of how it might look and actually function,” said Dr Pool.

“Visualising the structure using a technique called cryo-electron microscopy has confirmed that many of the earlier proposals of the model were in fact correct.

“This process occurs in all cells, although our work has concentrated on mammalian pancreatic cells.

“Understanding how these specialised secretary cells release insulin is of great significance and might be important in understanding why this process goes wrong in type-2 diabetes.”

Aeron Haworth | alfa
Further information:
http://www.manchester.ac.uk

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Embryonic development: How do limbs develop from cells?
18.05.2018 | Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

nachricht Reading histone modifications, an oncoprotein is modified in return
18.05.2018 | American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Explanation for puzzling quantum oscillations has been found

So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics

Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...

Im Focus: Dozens of binaries from Milky Way's globular clusters could be detectable by LISA

Next-generation gravitational wave detector in space will complement LIGO on Earth

The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...

Im Focus: Entangled atoms shine in unison

A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.

The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...

Im Focus: Computer-Designed Customized Regenerative Heart Valves

Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.

Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...

Im Focus: Light-induced superconductivity under high pressure

A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.

Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Save the date: Forum European Neuroscience – 07-11 July 2018 in Berlin, Germany

02.05.2018 | Event News

Invitation to the upcoming "Current Topics in Bioinformatics: Big Data in Genomics and Medicine"

13.04.2018 | Event News

Unique scope of UV LED technologies and applications presented in Berlin: ICULTA-2018

12.04.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersonic waves may help electronics beat the heat

18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Keeping a Close Eye on Ice Loss

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

CrowdWater: An App for Flood Research

18.05.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>