December 10, 2013

TUDCA is AWOL in T1D and T2D

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TUDCAResearchers have found that the cause of T1D may be something more than an autoimmune attack. Is there a weakness in the beta cells, themselves? The study was published in Science Translational Medicine.

New research is hinting that a naturally occurring molecule called TUDCA  could prevent T1D. The story goes back to the ER or endoplasmic reticulum that produce antibodies. Something goes awry in the process of protein folding and this is where the autoimmune attack begins.

The  study was based on the hypothesis that autoimmunity alone cannot cause full-blown T1D. There has to be something else happening in the body to provoke such an attack. Enter TUDCA, the hero in alleviating ER stress in T2D.

The exciting findings in this study on T1D is similar to the results observed in a former T2D study. When TUDCA was administered to mice, it enhanced ER function and was able to prevent T1D.

Without crowning TUDCA as the Monday morning quarterback for T1D, researchers believe that it may prove to be a promising treatment for people at high risk for T1D.

Correctly folded shirts resemble the ER of a non-diabetic person. People with T1D, the shirts look a little disheveled. If TUDCA is called-in early enough, the clean-up crew can prevent the autoantibodies from taking shape.

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