Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Low Dose of Serotonin-Acting Chemical Improves Blood Sugar Tolerance

09.11.2007
An appetite-suppressing chemical also improves glucose tolerance and lowers insulin levels in obese and diabetic mice, researchers report in the November issue of Cell Metabolism, a publication of Cell Press. Importantly, the researchers found, those effects of the drug occurred at a low dose that had no influence on feeding behavior, body weight, activity level, or energy expenditure.

The decades-old drug compound, known as m-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP), triggers serotonin receptors in the brain. The findings suggest a new strategy for treating the rising tide of people with type 2 diabetes via targeting the so-called serotonin 2C (5-HT2C) receptors.

“Though just a first step, this work provides a new direction in the search for novel pathways and molecules in the brain to target for the treatment of type 2 diabetes,” said Lora Heisler of the University of Cambridge. “The challenge now is to come up with drugs that selectively target 5-HT2C receptors safely and effectively.”

mCPP has primarily been used in scientific studies of the serotonin pathway and may not itself be appropriate for type 2 diabetes treatment due to its other known effects, Heisler added. Heisler’s collaborators included Joel Elmquist of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and Andrew Butler of Louisiana State University System.

... more about:
»5-HT2C »Diabetes »Insulin »effect »receptor »type

Serotonin is a chemical nerve messenger with effects on physiology and behavior, including mood, sleep, and appetite, that are mediated by multiple serotonin receptors clustered into seven distinct families that are widely expressed in the central and/or peripheral nervous systems, the researchers explained. Earlier studies had explored serotonin-acting drugs in treating obesity, but the possibility of a direct role for serotonin in the development and treatment of type 2 diabetes has received little attention, they said.

Earlier studies revealed that mice lacking the 5-HT2C receptor develop insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes and later overeat and become obese. In the current study, the researchers examined whether a drug that acts on 5-HT2C receptors could improve glucose tolerance. They show in mouse models of obesity and insulin resistance that the drug does improve blood sugar levels. Moreover, it does so even at concentrations that do not lead to reductions in food intake or body weight.

The researchers further report evidence that the serotonin-acting drug may work by stimulating “a-melanocyte-stimulating hormone” (a-MSH) in the brain’s arcuate nucleus, a portion of the hypothalamus important for appetite control. They show that the primary effect of the drug on glucose balance requires activation of one type of a-MSH receptor, called melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4R).

“Our findings add to emerging evidence that the brain may have important influences on glucose metabolism and insulin action,” Heisler added.

While the findings do link serotonin pathways to improved blood sugar tolerance, serotonin supplements would not produce this effect, Heisler noted. That’s because serotonin taken in through the diet cannot cross the blood-brain barrier to reach the critical receptors.

“The identification of new classes of antidiabetic agents is a clinical imperative,” the researchers concluded. “The findings presented here identify a novel therapeutic application for a class of pharmacological compounds developed more than two decades ago. We demonstrate that 5-HT2C receptor agonists significantly improve glucose tolerance and [lower insulin levels in mouse] models of obesity and type 2 diabetes via an MC4R-dependent mechanism. These findings not only delineate specific neuronal pathways of relevance to a highly prevalent metabolic disease but also suggest that 5-HT2C receptor agonists may prove an effective and mechanistically novel treatment for type 2 diabetes.”

Cathleen Genova | alfa
Further information:
http://www.cell.com

Further reports about: 5-HT2C Diabetes Insulin effect receptor type

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Exciting Plant Vacuoles
14.06.2019 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht A microscopic topographic map of cellular function
13.06.2019 | University of Missouri-Columbia

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: MPSD team discovers light-induced ferroelectricity in strontium titanate

Light can be used not only to measure materials’ properties, but also to change them. Especially interesting are those cases in which the function of a material can be modified, such as its ability to conduct electricity or to store information in its magnetic state. A team led by Andrea Cavalleri from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg used terahertz frequency light pulses to transform a non-ferroelectric material into a ferroelectric one.

Ferroelectricity is a state in which the constituent lattice “looks” in one specific direction, forming a macroscopic electrical polarisation. The ability to...

Im Focus: Determining the Earth’s gravity field more accurately than ever before

Researchers at TU Graz calculate the most accurate gravity field determination of the Earth using 1.16 billion satellite measurements. This yields valuable knowledge for climate research.

The Earth’s gravity fluctuates from place to place. Geodesists use this phenomenon to observe geodynamic and climatological processes. Using...

Im Focus: Tube anemone has the largest animal mitochondrial genome ever sequenced

Discovery by Brazilian and US researchers could change the classification of two species, which appear more akin to jellyfish than was thought.

The tube anemone Isarachnanthus nocturnus is only 15 cm long but has the largest mitochondrial genome of any animal sequenced to date, with 80,923 base pairs....

Im Focus: Tiny light box opens new doors into the nanoworld

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, have discovered a completely new way of capturing, amplifying and linking light to matter at the nanolevel. Using a tiny box, built from stacked atomically thin material, they have succeeded in creating a type of feedback loop in which light and matter become one. The discovery, which was recently published in Nature Nanotechnology, opens up new possibilities in the world of nanophotonics.

Photonics is concerned with various means of using light. Fibre-optic communication is an example of photonics, as is the technology behind photodetectors and...

Im Focus: Cost-effective and individualized advanced electronic packaging in small batches now available

Fraunhofer IZM is joining the EUROPRACTICE IC Service platform. Together, the partners are making fan-out wafer level packaging (FOWLP) for electronic devices available and affordable even in small batches – and thus of interest to research institutes, universities, and SMEs. Costs can be significantly reduced by up to ten customers implementing individual fan-out wafer level packaging for their ICs or other components on a multi-project wafer. The target group includes any organization that does not produce in large quantities, but requires prototypes.

Research always means trying things out and daring to do new things. Research institutes, universities, and SMEs do not produce in large batches, but rather...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

SEMANTiCS 2019 brings together industry leaders and data scientists in Karlsruhe

29.04.2019 | Event News

Revered mathematicians and computer scientists converge with 200 young researchers in Heidelberg!

17.04.2019 | Event News

First dust conference in the Central Asian part of the earth’s dust belt

15.04.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Concert of magnetic moments

14.06.2019 | Information Technology

Materials informatics reveals new class of super-hard alloys

14.06.2019 | Materials Sciences

New imaging modality targets cholesterol in arterial plaque

14.06.2019 | Medical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>