Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Natural compounds block autoimmune response in diabetes, arthritis

08.11.2006
UCI study identifies how treatment can limit impact of T cells in autoimmune diseases

Natural compounds derived from a sea anemone extract and a shrub plant have been found to block the autoimmune disease response in type-1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, according to University of California, Irvine researchers.

The study shows both in human and animal tests how these compounds work to deter the effect of autoimmune T-cells, white blood cells that attack the body. The goal, according to UCI researchers, is to develop new treatments from these compounds that will target these destructive T-cells while allowing other white blood cells to fight disease and infection.

Study results appear Nov. 6-10 in the Early Online Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The study, led by UC Irvine School of Medicine researchers George Chandy and Christine Beeton, identifies how these compounds work against a type of white blood cells called effector memory T lymphocytes, which play a major role in autoimmunity. Both compounds block an ion channel in these cells that prevents the cells from proliferating and producing chemicals called cytokines that attack the body during autoimmune disease states.

"Autoimmune diseases affect millions of Americans, and any new therapies that can aid them will have great significance," Chandy said. "What's promising about this study is that we identified a protein target on the T-cells that promote autoimmune activity and the compounds that can selectively block the target and shut down the destructive cells."

White blood cells patrol the body to fight against cancer and infections, but if some of these cells turn against the body they are meant to protect, they cause autoimmune diseases. Millions of people worldwide are afflicted with disabling autoimmune disorders. Two examples of this large class of diseases are type-1 diabetes, in which white blood cells attack the pancreas, and rheumatoid arthritis, in which the joints are attacked.

In their study, the UCI researchers used modified compounds derived from the rue plant (PAP-1) and a Cuban sea anemone extract (SL5), both of which block the ion channel in the destructive T-cells.

In one set of tests using blood samples from type-1 diabetes patients and joint fluid from people with rheumatoid arthritis, the researchers found that both compounds suppressed the function of the autoimmune T-cells without affecting other T-cells that fight infections.

In another set of tests using rats, the compound from the rue shrub plant delayed the onset and reduced the incidence of disease in diabetic rats, while the venom compound stopped the progression of the disease and improved the joint function of rats with experimental autoimmune arthritis. In these rat tests, the compounds were nontoxic.

The Chandy laboratory previously discovered that SL5 compound was effective in treating rats with an experimental model of multiple sclerosis, another devastating autoimmune disease. Preclinical safety studies on PAP-1 and SL5 are under way in collaboration with AIRMID, a biotech company in the San Francisco Bay Area.

"We began our work on these natural products many years ago when we came across a report that described the beneficial effect of a scorpion sting on a patient with multiple sclerosis," Beeton said. "This work also speaks to the importance of protecting our plant and animal biodiversity -- you never know where a new medicine will come from."

Heike Wulff from University of California, Davis is a co-lead author, and other authors from UCI, UC Davis, Johns Hopkins University, Bachem Biosciences and the Benaroya Research Institute in Seattle are noted in the study text. The National Institutes of Health, American Diabetes Association, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Arthritis National Research Foundation and David Israelsky provided support for this study.

About type-1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis: The American Diabetes Association estimates that type-1 diabetes mellitus, also known as juvenile diabetes, affects one in every 400 or 600 children and adolescents in the U.S. It is characterized by a destruction of the cells that produce insulin in the pancreas. Without enough insulin, the body cannot correctly regulate levels of blood glucose, a major source of energy for the body. Type-1 diabetes can lead to serious complications such as heart disease, blindness, and nerve or kidney damage.

In rheumatoid arthritis, white blood cells induce inflammation in the joints, leading to muscle and joint aches, stiffness, and fatigue. According to the Arthritis Foundation, rheumatoid arthritis is one of the most serious and disabling types, affecting mostly women. An estimated 2.1 million people in the U.S. have rheumatoid arthritis. Some recent studies have suggested that the overall number of new cases of rheumatoid arthritis actually may be going down.

Tom Vasich | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.today.uci.edu

Further reports about: Arthritis Diabetes Rheumatoid T-Cells UCI autoimmune rheumatoid arthritis type-1

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Gut microbiome regulates the intestinal immune system, researchers find
19.12.2018 | Brown University

nachricht Greener days ahead for carbon fuels
19.12.2018 | DOE/Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: New megalibrary approach proves useful for the rapid discovery of new materials

Northwestern discovery tool is thousands of times faster than conventional screening methods

Different eras of civilization are defined by the discovery of new materials, as new materials drive new capabilities. And yet, identifying the best material...

Im Focus: Data storage using individual molecules

Researchers from the University of Basel have reported a new method that allows the physical state of just a few atoms or molecules within a network to be controlled. It is based on the spontaneous self-organization of molecules into extensive networks with pores about one nanometer in size. In the journal ‘small’, the physicists reported on their investigations, which could be of particular importance for the development of new storage devices.

Around the world, researchers are attempting to shrink data storage devices to achieve as large a storage capacity in as small a space as possible. In almost...

Im Focus: Data use draining your battery? Tiny device to speed up memory while also saving power

The more objects we make "smart," from watches to entire buildings, the greater the need for these devices to store and retrieve massive amounts of data quickly without consuming too much power.

Millions of new memory cells could be part of a computer chip and provide that speed and energy savings, thanks to the discovery of a previously unobserved...

Im Focus: An energy-efficient way to stay warm: Sew high-tech heating patches to your clothes

Personal patches could reduce energy waste in buildings, Rutgers-led study says

What if, instead of turning up the thermostat, you could warm up with high-tech, flexible patches sewn into your clothes - while significantly reducing your...

Im Focus: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

New megalibrary approach proves useful for the rapid discovery of new materials

19.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

Artificial intelligence meets materials science

19.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

Gut microbiome regulates the intestinal immune system, researchers find

19.12.2018 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>