Diabetes has a detrimental effect on a person’s ability to recover from a heart transplant, notes a study in the September Journal of Nuclear Medicine.
“Using positron emission tomography (PET) and the transplanted heart as a very specific model to study the regenerative capacity of the heart’s sympathetic nervous system, we determined that reinnervation—or the heart’s ability to develop new nerves to replace damaged ones—is slower in diabetic patients,” said Frank M. Bengel, a visiting associate professor of radiology and the director of cardiovascular nuclear medicine at Johns Hopkins Medicine’s Russell H. Morgan Department of Radiology and Radiological Science in Baltimore, Md. “Our results confirm a detrimental effect of diabetes on the potential for recovery of sympathetic nerve fibers of the heart,” added the co-author of “Effect of Diabetes Mellitus on Sympathetic Neuronal Regeneration Studied in the Model of Transplant Reinnervation.”
“A better understanding of the importance of nervous system abnormalities and an imaging technique to precisely characterize nerve damage may be of value to guide future therapeutic efforts aimed at reducing cardiac risk with diabetes mellitus patients,” explained Bengel, who was an associate professor at the Technical University of Munich, where the study was performed, prior to his move to Johns Hopkins. “Even if a transplant recipient is suffering from diabetes, there is still a chance for reinnervation—just at a slower speed,” he added. “Unfortunately, there are no techniques developed yet that speed the nerve regeneration process,” he said.
Currently, nuclear medicine techniques (such as PET) are the only imaging techniques that can measure the presence and function of the sympathetic nervous system of the heart, said Bengel. “There are invasive methods that allow for the measurement of neurotransmitters released to the blood, offering indirect conclusions about the presence, storage and release of neurotransmitters from neurons. These methods require complicated and laborious sampling of blood from coronary arteries and veins,” he added.
Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease that occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Such a deficiency results in increased concentrations of glucose (sugar) in the blood, which can damage many of the body’s systems. Diabetes mellitus is a known major risk factor of heart disease, negatively affecting the heart’s contraction and rhythm, said Bengel.
Future research will need to focus on how regeneration of sympathetic nerves can be facilitated and how changes of the sympathetic nerve integrity in the heart are interrelated with changes of prognosis and outcome of diseases like diabetes mellitus, said Bengel.
“Effect of Diabetes Mellitus on Sympathetic Neuronal Regeneration Studied in the Model of Transplant Reinnervation” appears in the September issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine, which is published by SNM. Other co-authors include Peter Ueberfuhr and Bruno Reichart, Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany; and Dominik Schäfer, Stephan G. Nekolla and Markus Schwaiger, all with the Technical University of Munich, Germany.
Maryann Verrillo | EurekAlert!
Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
What does congenital Zika syndrome look like?
24.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego
Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.
The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.
Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...
Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.
Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...
In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.
Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.
Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...
20.03.2017 | Event News
14.03.2017 | Event News
07.03.2017 | Event News
24.03.2017 | Materials Sciences
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy