Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

U of T researchers one step closer to creating oral insulin

29.03.2004


University of Toronto researchers have shown that "designer molecules" can interact with the body’s insulin receptor, a step toward the development of an oral medication for diabetes.



U of T professors Lakshmi Kotra, Cecil Yip, Peter Ottensmeyer and Robert Batey have created the first small molecules using the three-dimensional structure of the insulin receptor. A receptor is the site on the surface of a cell to which molecules with specific tasks, such as hormones, attach themselves. Insulin’s task is to initiate the utilization of sugar in the blood.

"This is the first time that a 3-D model of the insulin receptor on a cell surface has been created and used for drug design," says Kotra, director of U of T’s Molecular Design and Information Technology Centre (MDIT). The study appears in the March 22 issue of Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters.


The 3-D computer modelling of the receptor and the drug design were conducted at MDIT, a state-of-the-art computer modelling centre with resources for drug design. Researchers then used this knowledge to create specially-designed molecules that bind to the receptor in the same way insulin does. In so doing, they hope to develop a drug similar to insulin that can be taken orally. (Insulin itself must be injected directly into the bloodstream because it is broken down in the stomach if taken orally.)

More than two million Canadians have diabetes, and many of them require regular insulin injections to help their bodies absorb sugar properly. Research has shown self-injection to be a problem for children and the elderly, and lifelong regular injections are not pleasant for patients.

Previous efforts to create oral medications with insulin’s properties have failed, due to inadequate knowledge of the dynamics of the relationship between insulin and its receptor. Since the U of T team now understands this structural relationship, they can work to design novel molecules that mimic insulin’s therapeutic properties.

Other researchers included Ira Goldfine of the University of California, San Francisco, and U of T postdoctoral fellows Christopher Tan and Lianhu Wei. U of T Innovations Foundation is managing the commercialization of this discovery. This research is supported by Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Proof-of-Principle programs.

Elaine Smith | University of Toronto
Further information:
http://www.news.utoronto.ca/bin5/040326a.asp

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Candidate Ebola vaccine still effective when highly diluted, macaque study finds
21.10.2019 | NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

nachricht Autism spectrum disorder risk linked to insufficient placental steroid
21.10.2019 | Children's National Hospital

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Solving the mystery of quantum light in thin layers

A very special kind of light is emitted by tungsten diselenide layers. The reason for this has been unclear. Now an explanation has been found at TU Wien (Vienna)

It is an exotic phenomenon that nobody was able to explain for years: when energy is supplied to a thin layer of the material tungsten diselenide, it begins to...

Im Focus: An ultrafast glimpse of the photochemistry of the atmosphere

Researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have explored the initial consequences of the interaction of light with molecules on the surface of nanoscopic aerosols.

The nanocosmos is constantly in motion. All natural processes are ultimately determined by the interplay between radiation and matter. Light strikes particles...

Im Focus: Shaping nanoparticles for improved quantum information technology

Particles that are mere nanometers in size are at the forefront of scientific research today. They come in many different shapes: rods, spheres, cubes, vesicles, S-shaped worms and even donut-like rings. What makes them worthy of scientific study is that, being so tiny, they exhibit quantum mechanical properties not possible with larger objects.

Researchers at the Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility located at DOE's Argonne National...

Im Focus: Novel Material for Shipbuilding

A new research project at the TH Mittelhessen focusses on the development of a novel light weight design concept for leisure boats and yachts. Professor Stephan Marzi from the THM Institute of Mechanics and Materials collaborates with Krake Catamarane, which is a shipyard located in Apolda, Thuringia.

The project is set up in an international cooperation with Professor Anders Biel from Karlstad University in Sweden and the Swedish company Lamera from...

Im Focus: Controlling superconducting regions within an exotic metal

Superconductivity has fascinated scientists for many years since it offers the potential to revolutionize current technologies. Materials only become superconductors - meaning that electrons can travel in them with no resistance - at very low temperatures. These days, this unique zero resistance superconductivity is commonly found in a number of technologies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Future technologies, however, will harness the total synchrony of electronic behavior in superconductors - a property called the phase. There is currently a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Symposium on Functional Materials for Electrolysis, Fuel Cells and Metal-Air Batteries

02.10.2019 | Event News

NEXUS 2020: Relationships Between Architecture and Mathematics

02.10.2019 | Event News

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer LBF and BAM develop faster procedure for flame-retardant plastics

21.10.2019 | Materials Sciences

For EVs with higher range: Take greater advantage of the potential offered by lightweight construction materials

21.10.2019 | Materials Sciences

Benefit and risk: Meta-analysis draws a heterogeneous picture of drug-coated balloon angioplasty

21.10.2019 | Medical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>