Type 2 diabetes

Scientists find a post-biotic bacteria that can lower blood glucose levels

by Barbara Hewitt on April 26, 2017

The by-products of bacteria, known as post-biotics, can lower blood glucose and allow insulin to work better which could help with future treatments for diabetes, according to a new study.

A team of researchers from McMaster University in Canada believe that understanding how different parts of bacteria control glucose could lead to new therapies that reduce obesity and therefore the likelihood of overweight people developing type 2 diabetes.

‘We know that gut bacteria, often called the microbiome, send inflammation signals that change how well insulin works to lower blood glucose,’ said Jonathan Schertzer, assistant professor of biochemistry and biomedical sciences at the university.

‘It was previously thought that bacteria only caused problems such as higher inflammation and higher blood glucose. But this is only half of the story. We discovered that a specific component of bacteria actually lowers blood glucose and allows insulin to work better during obesity,’ he explained.

He pointed out that the research has identified a post-biotic that lowers blood glucose during obesity and this could be significant for obese people with higher levels of blood inuslin in glucose which can trigger prediabetes.

‘But we haven’t understood what triggers elevated blood glucose. This is significant because only some individuals with obesity develop prediabetes. Blood glucose is influenced by our genes, the food we eat, and the bacteria in our gut,’ said Schertzer.

His research team is now working to develop new bacterial based drugs to lower blood glucose and combat prediabetes before type 2 diabetes develops. At this time, they have had success in trials with mice with a drug currently used for osteosarcoma, a bone cancer.

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