Step forward in type II diabetes

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  • Thread starter jim mcnamara
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  • #1
jim mcnamara
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Targeting epigenetic maintenance of beta cell identity should be actively explored -

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2018-06-diabetes-results-breakdown-epigenetic.html

Tess Tsai-Hsiu Lu et al. The Polycomb-Dependent Epigenome Controls β Cell Dysfunction, Dedifferentiation, and Diabetes, Cell Metabolism (2018). DOI: 10.1016/j.cmet.2018.04.013

Diabetes in this context is defined as an epigenetic disorder, where the insulin secreting beta cells in pancreatic islets 'lose their identity' over time. This is due to epigenetic changes to DNA in the beta cells.

The article indicates that it should be medically feasible to stablize loss of functioning beta cells and possibly reverse changed ones. Medical Express article indicates this kind of treatment now is employed in treating some cancers.
 

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  • #2
Laroxe
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I suspect this might be more of a step sideways. Epigenetic's basically describes a number of processes involved in the control of gene expression and there are few if any physiological processes that can't be reduced to elements of gene expression. The problem with this paper is that it seems to be inconsistent with what is known about the pathophysiology of type II diabetes, in fact impairment of beta cell function occurs late in the process it is not a cause as such. There is a good review at;

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279115/
 

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