Sunday February 17, 2019

Alcohol addiction could be treated with diabetes medication

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Beer into glass on a old stone

By NewsGram Staff Writer

London: A new research suggested that the medication for diabetes and obesity can treat alcohol dependency.

Swedish researchers identified that interfering with the hormone GLP-1 could be a target for treating alcohol dependence.Researchers have found that a medication that resemble GLP-1, which is used to treat Type-2 diabetes as well as obesity, also could be used to treat alcohol dependence.

fb72ediabetes-photoAlcohol dependence causes morbidity as well as mortality and is a major health problem in today’s society.

“We suggest that medications that resemble GLP-1 could be used to treat alcohol dependence in humans,” said one of the researchers Elisabet Jerlhag from Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

Usually, dopamine is released in the brain’s reward center in response to drinking alcohol, which leads to a sense of euphoria.

The GLP-1-like substance prevents the ability of alcohol to increase dopamine in reward areas in the mice, suggesting that they no longer experience a reward from alcohol, the findings showed.

“The GLP-1-like substance reduced the alcohol consumption by 30-40 percent in rats that drank large quantities of alcohol for several months,” Jerlhag noted.

The researchers found that the diabetes medication also reduced the motivation to drink alcohol in rats that were bred to drink a lot of alcohol. The medication also prevented relapse drinking in rats, which is major problem for alcohol dependent individuals.

The study was published in the journal Addict Biology.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Diabetes Can Contribute to Infertility: Experts

The global health body also estimates that 80 per cent of diabetes deaths occur in low and middle-income countries and projects that such deaths will double between 2016 and 2030

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Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay

Diabetes, commonly described as a “lifestyle disease”, can contribute to infertility in both women and men, warn health experts.

“Diabetes can cause infertility in both men and women. Both sexes are at equal risk of infertility,” S.K. Wangnoo, endocrinologist at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals, told IANS.

Infertility affects up to 15 per cent of reproductive-aged couples worldwide. According to an estimate by the World Health Organization (WHO), the overall prevalence of primary infertility in India is between 3.9 per cent to 16.8 per cent.

“Diabetes in men damages DNA of the sperm and leads to reduced number of sperms and reduced motility of sperms which leads to infertility. Although having diabetes does not necessarily make men infertile, it could make them less fertile,” added Roopak Wadhwa, Consultant at Fortis Hospital, New Delhi.

On the other hand, diabetes in women is associated with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and other autoimmune diseases that can lead to infertility.

“Diabetes causes a lack of glucose control in the body which, in turn, can make the implantation of the fertile egg in the uterus difficult. Therefore, the chances of miscarriage in diabetic women increase between 30-60 per cent,” Wadhwa explained.

Another WHO report had stated that India had 69.2 million people living with diabetes in 2015.

Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay

By 2030, nearly 98 million people in India may have Type-2 diabetes, according to a study published in the Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology journal last year.

While diabetic patients can always try parenthood, the risk of passing on the sugar disease to the child is approximately 50 per cent high, Wangnoo stated.

“It can also cause intra-uterine growth retardation (IUGR) and congenital anomalies. IUGR is a condition where an unborn baby is smaller than it should be because it is not growing at a normal rate inside the womb,” Wadhwa added.

Furthermore, he noted that diabetic mothers are at high risk of premature deliveries, abortions and perinatal (during birth) complications.

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High diabetes can be risky for both mother and child. The experts suggest that maintaining a good lifestyle, an ideal body weight, keeping sugars within target range, avoiding smoking and alcohol and excessive work related stress are some of the preventive measures.

Besides infertility, diabetes can also raise the risk of cardiovascular and lung disease, arthritis, osteoporosis. An estimated 3.4 million deaths are caused due to high blood sugar, according to the WHO.

The global health body also estimates that 80 per cent of diabetes deaths occur in low and middle-income countries and projects that such deaths will double between 2016 and 2030. (IANS)