Researchers from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) have discovered a chemical compound that could lower sugar levels as effectively as the diabetes drug Metformin but with a lower dose.
This new approach to diabetes drug discovery has been published in PLOS One, a peer-reviewed open access scientific journal. The research team includes scientists from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (UTK) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).
Along with his research team, Darryl Quarles, MD, University of Tennessee Medical Group (UTMG) Endowed Professor of Nephrology, director of the Division of Nephrology, and associate dean for Research in the College of Medicine at UTHSC, has been working with a specific protein called GPRC6A, which regulates sugar levels by simultaneously correcting multiple metabolic derangements that underlie Type 2 diabetes function. These derangements include abnormalities in pancreatic β-cell proliferation and insulin secretion, glucose uptake into skeletal muscle, and liver regulation of glucose and fat metabolism.