Smartphone-Controlled Cells Could Pump Insulin For Diabetics

Smartphone-Controlled Cells Could Pump Insulin for Diabetics

Smartphone-Controlled Cells Could Pump Insulin for Diabetics

Scientists in China have used a smartphone and a technique called optogenetics to precisely control cells to deliver insulin to diabetic mice. The approach could be used to continuously monitor blood glucose levels in human diabetics and automatically produce necessary insulin, a hormone that converts sugar from food into energy the body can use.
The researchers engineered human cells with a light-sensitive gene that is found in plants and produces insulin on cue when activated by wirelessly powered red LED lights. They inserted those lights and the designer cells onto small, flexible discs that were then grafted onto the backs of mice.
Neural probes that combine optics, electronics, and drugs could help unlock the secrets of the brain.
A customized Android-based phone app turns on the LED lights and adjusts the intensity of the light. The researchers exposed the diabetic mice to about four hours of light each day and were able to stabilize normal insulin production in the bloodstream for 15 days.
Optogenetics is an emerging field that uses light-sensitive proteins to regulate biological activities in the body. The technique has been envisioned as a way to treat a range of diseases, including Parkinson’s and schizophrenia. The first human test of optogenetics is under way to restore vision to patients with retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye condition that leads to blindness.
The researchers, who describe the insulin delivery approach in Science Translational Medicine, say the system was inspired by the “smart home” concept, which involves lighting, heating, and Continue reading

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Lose Belly Fat Fast With This Diabetes-Friendly Exercise Routine

Lose Belly Fat Fast With This Diabetes-Friendly Exercise Routine

Everyone seems to want a slimmer middle, a smaller pant size — you know the drill. But trimming your waistline is about so much more than how you look in the mirror; it’s about improving your insulin sensitivity, glucose levels, and risk for diabetes complications, such as heart attacks, strokes, and cancer.
“Current research shows that abdominal fat is a driving factor behind the development of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, as well as [a factor that affects] how people manage the condition,” explains Margaret Eckert-Norton, PhD, RN, a certified diabetes educator and associate professor of nursing at St. Joseph’s College in New York City.
The Difference Between Visceral Fat and Subcutaneous Fat
Belly fat, also known as abdominal or visceral fat, hangs out in and around your internal organs. It's known to secrete a variety of proteins that trigger inflammation and affect your body’s hormone levels, and it can increase your risk for a variety of conditions (but more on this later). For this reason, some experts actually call it “active fat.” That’s in contrast to subcutaneous fat, which sits directly underneath your skin and pretty much just acts as an energy reserve without strongly influencing health, Dr. Eckert-Norton says.
How Excess Belly Fat Can Increase the Risk of Diabetes Complications
So what are those conditions that belly fat influences? The first and most notable one for anyone with diabetes is insulin resistance, she says. One of the many factors at play is retinol-binding protein 4 (RBP4), a compound that visceral cells secrete, dull Continue reading

Visceral Fat & Diabetes: Reducing Belly Fat

Visceral Fat & Diabetes: Reducing Belly Fat

Noticing a little extra fat around your waist? That’s a clear warning sign– belly fat, or visceral fat means that your body is sounding an alarm you shouldn’t ignore. Doing so will increase your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and even more weight gain.
Arm yourself with the knowledge to understand the problem with belly fat, and what you can do to get rid of it as quickly as possible.
It’s What You Can’t See That is So Deadly
Your body is programmed to store fat under the skin where you can pinch it. That’s the safest place for it, far away from your organs.
But that programming can get totally messed up.
When that happens, your body has no choice but to quickly grab up extra fat and tuck it away between your organs.
Like a boa constrictor, it wraps itself around your intestines, liver, pancreas, and even your heart. This is called “visceral fat,” and it is very dangerous.1
Each of the cross-sections in the image below shows what belly fat looks like in seven men with the exact same waist girth. The dark areas are organs and muscle. The white areas are fat:
The “very marbled steak” in the lower right hand corner is packed so full of killer visceral fat that you can’t even see the organs.
Skinny On the Outside, Obese On the Inside
Chrumaine is a lovely lady, busy school teacher, and totally devoted to her family.
In the photo to the right, you can see that she’s not morbidly obese. In fact, at 5’3″ and 157 pounds, she doesn’t have a BMI that would concern her doctor too much.
She seems healthy enough, right?
Wrong. That red shirt is hiding dea Continue reading

Wellthy Therapeutics: Taming diabetes

Wellthy Therapeutics: Taming diabetes

Abhishek Shah, CEO, Wellthy Therapeutics, aspires to achieve a full-fledged Asia presence in four to five years
Image: Mexy Xavier
Smruti Daru is a woman who juggles many roles: Colleague, mother, daughter, wife. Her waking hours are brimming with tasks and expectations—from preparing meals for her school-going son to stressful assignments at work.
In 2009, when she was 53, Daru was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes— a condition where the body loses its ability to respond to insulin, leading to high blood glucose levels. Unlike with type 1 diabetes, where the patient is administered insulin through injections, type 2 diabetes can usually be managed through diet, exercise and pills, at least initially.
Following the diagnosis, Daru was prescribed medication and advised on the lifestyle changes needed to keep her diabetes in check. However, she found it impossible to tweak her schedule. And before she got accustomed to it, her initial dose of pills had to be doubled and then quadrupled. “I didn’t know what was happening to my body, I felt helpless,” she recalls.
Stories similar to Daru’s have become increasingly common in India. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there are 54 million type 2 diabetics in India, earning the country the infamous moniker of the ‘diabetes capital of the world’. WHO data shows that diabetes caused 1.5 million deaths globally in 2015, and that number is only increasing. The gravity of the situation clearly demands an approach that goes beyond traditional diagnosis and treatment.
Enter Abhishek Shah, the 34-year-old CEO of Continue reading

Eating less than 1,000 calories a day for up to five months can CURE Type 2 diabetes

Eating less than 1,000 calories a day for up to five months can CURE Type 2 diabetes

A low calorie diet can reverse type 2 diabetes and save the lives of millions of sufferers of the preventable condition, research suggests.
Eating between 825 and 850 calories a day for three to five months put the disease into remission in almost half of patients in a new study.
The Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DiRECT), published in The Lancet, looked at almost 300 adults aged 20 to 65 who had been diagnosed with the disease in the past six years.
It showed that participants, who were instructed to slowly reintroduce more food, after one year had lost an average of 10 kilos (22 lbs), and half had maintained remission without antidiabetic medications.
The researchers argue that their findings show that while bariatric surgery can achieve remission for a large number of diabetics, this 'expensive and risky' method is not necessary as diet and exercise alone is 'feasible'.
Restricting calories or fasting is an increasingly popular method of tackling diabetes. The 5:2 diet, aka The Fast Diet, is the best known of the fasts to reverse the disease and was made famous by Dr Michael Mosley.
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Worldwide, the number of people with type 2 diabetes has quadrupled over 35 years, rising from 108 million in 1980 to 422 million in 2014, and is expected to climb to 642 million by 2040.
It affects almost one in ten adults in the UK, and costs the NHS around £14 billion a year.
Addressing the 'root cause'
The Newcastle University scientists say that excess calories lead to a fatty liver, which causes the liver to produce too much glucose.
The excess fat is then pas Continue reading

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