February 6, 2013

Mixed Signals in Glucose Balance

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mixed-signalsIt’s important to control glucose when treating diabetes. When the body needs glucose, it’s imperative that this reserve fuel is available for release. A new study has found that a common Type 2 diabetes drug may impair this biological safety net.

Biguanides affect the production of glucose that comes from digestion. They don’t stimulate insulin release from islets. But they do inhibit the release of stored glucose from the liver.

When the light turns green for stores glucose,  glucose levels can drop dangerous low if islets think their light is still green.

This could result in a several car pileup in the middle of the intersection. In other words, this could be a trip to the ER for the biguanides drug user.

The researchers in this study have found a way to antagonize glucagon release from the liver. This fine-tunes the capability of metformin type drugs, because it allows the liver to release stored glucose when it is needed.

If these researchers continue on the path of creating the perfect metformin that retains control of fasting blood glucose, but allows the liver to release stored glucose when needed — we may be on the fast track to Eden in T2D oral medication.

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