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Spanning Research And The Clinic: Top Diabetes Awards For Garvan Leaders

Spanning research and the clinic: top diabetes awards for Garvan leaders

Spanning research and the clinic: top diabetes awards for Garvan leaders

Three leading diabetes researchers from the Garvan Institute of Medical Research have been announced as the winners of prestigious annual awards bestowed by the Australian Diabetes Society (ADS). The awards will be presented to Professors Mark Febbraio, Jerry Greenfield and Don Chisholm AO at the 2017 Annual Scientific Meeting of the ADS and the Australian Diabetes Educators Association (ADEA) in Perth in August this year.
Professor Mark Febbraio - 2017 ADS Kellion Award
Professor Febbraio will receive the ADS Kellion Award, which is awarded annually by the Kellion Foundation and the ADS, to an Australian who has made an outstanding contribution to diabetes research. Prof Febbraio, who is Head of Garvan’s Diabetes and Metabolism Division, is being recognised for significant advances he has made in deciphering the molecular mechanisms that underlie the protective effects of physical activity, and how they can be used to treat metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes. Of particular importance is his pivotal discovery, nearly 15 years ago, that skeletal muscle is an endocrine organ capable of secreting proteins termed ‘myokines’. Prof Febbraio’s ongoing research efforts include pre-clinical and clinical investigations of many identified myokines as personalised treatments for complex metabolic diseases.
As recipient of the award, Prof Febbraio will deliver the ADS Kellion Plenary Lecture at the ADS/ADEA Annual Scientific Meeting.
2017 marks the fourth year that a Garvan researcher has been honoured with this prestigious award; previous recipients include Professor Do Continue reading

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Treating Diabetes: Practical Advice for Combatting a Modern Epidemic

Treating Diabetes: Practical Advice for Combatting a Modern Epidemic


> Treating Diabetes: Practical Advice for Combatting a Modern Epidemic
Treating Diabetes: Practical Advice for Combatting a Modern Epidemic
Adapted from The Fourfold Path to Healing by Tom Cowan, MD, with Sally Fallon and Jaimen McMillan, to be published Spring 2004, NewTrends Publishing.
Diabetes is so common in America and other western countries that its presence in any human group has become a marker for civilization. Ironically, in no other field of western medicine has the promise of scientific breakthrough failed so poignantly as in the treatment of diabetes.
Diabetes is characterized by abnormally high levels of sugar or glucose in the blood, which spills into the urine, causing it to be sweet. The disease was first described by the Greeks who called it diabetes mellitus or honey passing through. Today there are at least 20 million diabetics in America, six million of whom must take shots of insulin daily. Scientists hailed the discovery of insulin in the 1920s as one of medicines greatest achievementsas, in fact, it was. Insulin is a pancreatic hormone needed for the transfer of glucose from the blood to the cells. When this system failswhen the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or the insulin cannot get the glucose into the cellsthen the sugar level in the blood remains abnormally high. This is the disease we call diabetes.
Originally, doctors thought that diabetes was simply a disease of insulin deficiency, a disease in which the pancreas was unable to produce enough insulin to meet the bodys demands, and that it could be successfully managed once t Continue reading

The Dangers of Yo-Yo Dieting

The Dangers of Yo-Yo Dieting


Weight cycling means losing weight, then regaining it, then repeating the cycle. When this weight loss is the result of dieting, the process is often called yo-yo dieting. New studies show that weight cycling contributes to heart disease and earlier death.
The doctors who preach lose weight to people with diabetes need to learn the dangers of weight cycling. Their prescriptions for weight loss may be doing more harm than good.
A new study in The New England Journal of Medicine found that, in patients with coronary heart disease (CHD), weight cycling was strongly associated with heart attacks, strokes, and death. Lead author Dr. Sripal Bangalore of New York University reported that the more weight subjects had lost and regained, the greater the risk.
The study reviewed records of roughly 9,500 people with heart disease. The data collection started in 2005. After a year of the study, participants continued to report their weight, among other factors, every six months.
Those whose weight had swung by an average of 8.5 pounds had a 124% increased risk of death, 117% increased risk of heart attack, and 136% increased risk of stroke compared to people whose weight had changed by 2 pounds or less. People with the greatest swings in weight also had a 78% increased risk of diabetes, even after correcting for all traditional risk factors.
The risk of weight cycling has been found before. In the Framingham Heart Study, which has been going on nearly 70 years, people whose weight swung up and down over the years were more likely to die of heart disease and strokes than people wi Continue reading

The Philippines is a diabetes hotspot

The Philippines is a diabetes hotspot


Philippine Daily Inquirer / 05:10 AM January 09, 2018
The Philippines is considered one of the diabetes hot spots in the Western Pacific region, where the disease is already reaching epidemic proportions. Our government knows this too well, and the increased taxes on sugary drinks is just one of the steps being taken to stem the tide.
Sufficient public education is needed to make everyone aware of the lifestyle changes needed to prevent diabetes, or to detect it earlier, so it can be controlled before there is serious damage to vital organs like the heart, kidneys, brain, eyes, nerves, liversince practically all organs and tissues of the body are affected.
Were happy to learn that the Philippine Center for Diabetes Education Foundation, Inc. (PCDEF), founded and currently headed by Dr. Augusto Litonjua, was recognized as a Centre of Education by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and its School of Diabetes during its recent congress held in Abu Dhabi.
Dr. Litonjua is considered the Father of Philippine Endocrinology for having pioneered in treating patients with diabetes and other endocrine or hormone-related problems in the country.
The PCDEF, also known as the Diabetes Center Philippines, has been at the forefront of raising public awareness for diabetes in the Philippines for the past 25 years through its four major programsDiabetes Awareness Week, Camp Cope (for Type 1 diabetic children), Intensive Training Course for Diabetes Teams, and the National Assembly of Diabetes Educators. To date, it has established more than 200 training teams, based in major Continue reading

Diabetes, space-saving DNA, and a very important gene

Diabetes, space-saving DNA, and a very important gene

Last week, you might recall that we looked at a gene called PDX1, a critical DNA sequence that plays a role in the development of a certain type of diabetes—and the actual development of the pancreas in human embryos. Now, as Diabetes Awareness Month continues, let’s take a look at another gene with major implications for sugar regulation. This week we’re focusing on KLF11, an important player in histone modifications (more on that shortly) that can play a role in a rare form of diabetes known as Maturity Onset Diabetes of the Young (MODY).
Every cell in the body has a nearly identical set of genes, but when and where these genes are read helps determine the identity and function of any given cell. For example, a neuron in the brain uses genes that instruct it on how to be a neuron. It is equally important that this neuron ignore other genes that carry instructions that are unrelated to neuron function. To do this, our body has developed ways of controlling when a gene is read.
Histone modifications relate to one method of controlling access to genes. DNA is stored within our cells as a combination of both DNA and a class of proteins known as histones. Histones are like genetic “hair curlers,” in that DNA can be wound tightly around them. This allows large amounts of DNA (around 6 feet of DNA in a single cell!) to be stored in microscopic structures known as chromatin. This can be problematic, though, because tight winding of the DNA can leave genes inaccessible—they can’t be used if they’re too tightly wound up.
This is where histone modification comes into Continue reading

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