24 September 2010

Rogue protein – problem for several health issues

More information about potential causes of type 2 diabetes and markers for type 2 diabetes keep making the news lately. The latest bit was originally published by the BBC about a rogue protein that seems to attack insulin-producing cells and lays down protein deposits that are implicated in Alzheimer's disease. So this is disturbing news on several fronts.

Then the same information appeared in Diabetes in Control. The one positive is that now more studies can be done and a possible way to stop this rogue protein from malfunctioning. This study does add more complexity to the causes of type 2 diabetes. Who said this was not an individual disease for type 2.

The researchers in Dublin state that future drugs could target this process. The amyloid protein causes inflammation in the pancreas which in turn destroys the beta cells. The problem comes in that some people with type 2 do not have the amyloid protein while others do. So there is much that needs to be considered in the development of drugs and a test for determining the present of this amyloid protein, to avoid treating people that do not have the protein present.

Dr. Eric Hewitt, a researcher into amyloid related disease at Leeds University says “what we have is a second indirect mechanism which can lead to the destruction of beta cells, and this could be helpful when looking at other diseases which may involve amyloid, such as Alzheimer's.”

This is an interesting study and I am sure will create some solutions which may well help in the treatment of diabetes and other diseases. Here is hoping for the best.

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