Proteins are beneficial for diabetics
Increasing the levels of some types of proteins is known to prevent further damage to the immune system of an individual who is diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. The increased protein levels prevent the damage to pancreas that is caused by the condition. This also prevents the spread of the disease in individuals who are recently diagnosed with the diabetes.
Cause of Type 1 diabetes
Generally, the primary cause of Type 1 diabetes is the over activity of an individual’s immune system. Some cells within the immune system are beneficial to fight invasion of any foreign particles, such as bacteria or viruses that may enter the body. However, some times the cells actually destroy the insulin producing beta cells that are found within the pancreas. Therefore, the reduced levels of insulin create havoc in the blood sugar levels of the individual thus causing the diabetes. This type of diabetes is inconvenient, as the patients need regular testing of their blood sugar levels and injecting insulin within their bodies.
New research may prove beneficial
A new study shows that increasing the level of the CCL22 protein seems to protect the pancreas from being attacked by an individual’s immune system. A normal immune system turns off the T-regulatory cells after fighting the foreign bodies’ invasion. However, in patients diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, the defending T-cells never stop the attack. In a clinical research involving mice, it was seen that increasing the CCL22 protein level within the pancreas prevented the attack on insulin-producing cells.
Method to boost the levels of CCL22
The scientists increased the levels of the CCL22 protein by injecting a modified virus that comprised DNA parts that encodes the protein within the beta cells of the mice. The injection of this virus increased the activity of the immune system, which resulted in attracting a higher number of T-regulatory cells. The lead scientist said that this was a new technique and was more beneficial over the general immune suppression method that has significant side effects.
New study may assist to develop new medications
The researchers involved in the study felt that their new findings could assist other scientists to develop new medicine that can curb the progress of Type 1 diabetes. However, additional research needs to be undertaken to gain a complete understanding of the CCL22 protein and the way it works before the research for new medicines can commence.