Brain important in lowering blood sugar

January 11, 2006

A new study says the brain plays a major role in the ability of insulin therapy to lower blood sugar in animals with diabetes.

The findings, published in the journal Cell Metabolism, suggests that therapies that boost the brain response to insulin might improve blood sugar control while lowering the required dose of the hormone in individuals with diabetes.

That advance, in turn, might help to reduce side effects of insulin treatment, such as weight gain, researchers said.

Scientists once thought that insulin's effects were limited to peripheral body tissues that respond to the hormone by importing glucose. However, more recent studies have revealed that insulin receptors in the brain also play an important role in normal blood sugar control, researchers said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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