Unexpected discovery may lead to new class of diabetes medications

While investigating the basic biochemistry properties of Metformin, scientists at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies discovered a group of HDAC enzymes in the liver.  These enzymes stimulate glucose production when blood sugar levels run low after prolonged periods of fasting or during the night.

Lead researcher, Reuben J. Shaw, a molecular and cell biologist at Salk, indicated that it was previously thought that these forms of HDAC enzymes were primarily found in muscle tissue. Scientists have been studying these enzymes for possible use in cancer treatments. Now this discovery may lead to new research to develop a new class of medications which would inhibit or prevent the HDAC enzyme from stimulating glucose production in the liver in people with diabetes.  This could mean more controlled blood sugars in the morning or after several hours without eating.

You can watch a video of Dr. Shaw discussing this research here.  It’s fascinating!

Often important discoveries happen by accident. Of course it is too early to tell what will happen with this information, after all, the research is still in rats. We are years away from doing trials in humans. But with new discovery brings new hope!  Keep your eyes and ears open.  Until then, keep doing the best you can and reach out if you need any support.


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