New research published this week in the journal Nature finds that a single injection of the protein FGF1 given to mice with the human equivalent of type 2 diabetes is enough to restore blood sugar levels to a healthy range for more than two days. The authors posit that the discovery could lead to the development of diabetes medications that are both safer and more effective.
As a chronic disease, diabetes can cause serious health problems including various painful comorbidities, and has no specific cure. Current treatment consists of management—with varying levels of success—through a combination of diet, exercise and pharmaceuticals. Key to this success is the control of glucose levels. This research found that sustained treatment with the protein doesn’t merely keep blood sugar under control, but also reverses insulin insensitivity, the underlying physiological cause of diabetes. Further, the newly developed treatment doesn’t result in side effects common to most current diabetes treatments. Read a news report about the research findings here.