Insulin is known for regulating blood glucose levels, and issues with its production lead to diabetes. Scientists at the Salk Institute have identified another molecular pathway that regulates blood glucose, which could open up a brand new avenue for treating diabetes.job is to respond to spikes in blood glucose levels, inducing cells to either use or store that energy. Diabetes can set in when the body either can’t produce enough, or it becomes resistant to the hormone. This means that Insulin is the main focus in treating diabetes.
The Salk team discovered that a molecule called FGF1 performed a similar function toInsulin, regulating blood glucose levels. A single injection of the hormone into diabetic mice restored their blood glucose to normal levels for more than two days, while later studies found that brain injections of FGF1 could effectively put diabetes into remission for weeks or months.
The Salk researchers investigated the mechanism behind FGF1, and whether or not it works the same way as. They found that FGF1 does function like Insulin in some ways, such as regulating glucose production in the liver and by suppressing fat breakdown, or lipolysis. But to their surprise, FGF1 was found to work through a completely different molecular pathway.
Insulin uses an enzyme called PDE3B to activate a signaling pathway that suppresses lipolysis. The researchers tested FGF1 with a range of enzymes, including PDE3B, and found that it uses PDE4.The research was published in the journal Cell Metabolism.