Current Highlights in Diabetes Research


By: Patrick Totty

Don’t make a run on the tea section of your neighborhood supermarket just yet, but keep this in mind: Scientists at the Neurosciences Institute of the University of Dundee in Scotland say that drinking black tea could help combat diabetes.

While emphasizing that their research is at an experimental, pre-clinical stage, the scientists report that black tea contains compounds, called theaflavins and thearubigins, that mimic the action of insulin.

Their findings are part of a general study of agents that might substitute for insulin in the treatment of type 2 diabetes.  The researchers are seeking additional funding to see how the black tea constituents work like insulin.

When Kissing a Frog May Boost Your Insulin!  

Here’s a name to roll around your mouth: “pseudis paradoxa” which is the Latin name for the “paradoxical frog,” a South American amphibian whose skin secretions show promise in stimulating the release of insulin in type 2 diabetics.

Scientists at the United Arab Emirates University and the University of Ulster in the United Kingdom tested a synthetic version of a skin secretion the frog uses to ward off infection, applying it to type 2 pancreatic cells in the laboratory. The compound, called pseudin 2, stimulated the cells’ production of insulin with no apparent ill effects.

The scientists believe that with more extensive testing, pseudin-2 will join the ranks of powerful new drugs being developed to manage type 2.

(The “paradoxical” part of the frog’s name refers to its transition from a tadpole that is 27 cm long to its adult length of 4 cm – the opposite of what happens in most of the animal world.) 

Source: Xinhua News Agency



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