Wednesday June 19, 2019

New Medicine That Could Replace Insulin Injections

The tip of the needle is made of nearly 100 per cent compressed, freeze-dried insulin. 

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The tip of the needle is made of nearly 100 per cent compressed, freeze-dried insulin. Pixabay

Researchers have developed a drug capsule that could be used to deliver oral doses of insulin, potentially replacing injections for patients with Type-2 diabetes, says a new study.

About the size of a blueberry, the capsule contains a single and small needle made of compressed insulin, which is injected after the capsule reaches the stomach.

The study showed that the capsule could deliver enough insulin to lower blood sugar to levels comparable to those produced by injections given through skin. They also demonstrated that the device can be adapted to deliver other protein drugs.

diabities
About the size of a blueberry, the capsule contains a single and small needle made of compressed insulin, which is injected after the capsule reaches the stomach. VOA

“We are really hopeful that this new type of capsule could someday help diabetic patients and perhaps anyone who requires therapies that can now only be given by injection or infusion,” said Robert Langer, Professor at the Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research in Britain.

The tip of the needle is made of nearly 100 per cent compressed, freeze-dried insulin.

When the capsule is swallowed, water in the stomach dissolves the sugar disk, releasing the spring and injecting the needle into the stomach wall.

The stomach wall has no pain receptors, so the patients would not be able to feel the prick of the injection. To ensure that the drug is injected into the stomach wall, the researchers designed their system so that no matter how the capsule lands in the stomach, it can orient itself so the needle is in contact with the lining of the stomach.

The findings, published in the journal Science, showed that the researchers could successfully deliver up to 300 micrograms of insulin.

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The type of drug delivery could be useful for any protein drug that normally has to be injected, such as immunosuppressants used to treat rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease and may also work for nucleic acids such as DNA and RNA, according to the researchers. Pixabay

More recently, they have been able to increase the dose to 5 milligrams, which is comparable to the amount that a patient with Type-2 diabetes would need to inject.

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Furthermore, no adverse effects from the capsule was found, which is made from biodegradable polymer and stainless steel components.

Importantly, this type of drug delivery could be useful for any protein drug that normally has to be injected, such as immunosuppressants used to treat rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease and may also work for nucleic acids such as DNA and RNA, according to the researchers. (IANS)

Next Story

New Study Reveals, Duration of Over-Feeding Are Directed at Increasing Glucose Disposal

"early adaptations in response to carbohydrate over-feeding are directed at increasing glucose disposal in order to maintain whole-body insulin sensitivity"

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Lifestyle factors such as overindulging in high-calorie foods play a large role in the development of these two serious health conditions. Pixabay

Overeating has been found to impair blood sugar (glucose) control and insulin levels but a new study suggests that the duration of a bout of overeating can affect how the body adapts to glucose and insulin processing when calorie intake increases.

Obesity and type 2 diabetes have increased significantly worldwide within the past 30 years.

Lifestyle factors such as overindulging in high-calorie foods play a large role in the development of these two serious health conditions.

diabetes
“Long-term overindulgence in fatty foods, instead of more nutritionally balanced foods, may be an important factor that causes rapid changes in blood sugar control,” the study added. Pixabay

For the study, researchers from Deakin University in Australia studied a small group of healthy and lean men with an average age of 22.

Volunteers participated in a short-term trial consisting of five days — indicative of humans overeating during festivals and holidays — and a long-term model of chronic overeating lasting 28 days.

The “overfeeding” portion of the diet included high-calorie snacks such as chocolate, meal replacement drinks and potato chips to add approximately 1,000 more calories to the men’s normal food consumption each day.

diabetes
Obesity and type 2 diabetes have increased significantly worldwide within the past 30 years. Pixabay

Published in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism, the study suggests that “early adaptations in response to carbohydrate over-feeding are directed at increasing glucose disposal in order to maintain whole-body insulin sensitivity”.

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“Long-term overindulgence in fatty foods, instead of more nutritionally balanced foods, may be an important factor that causes rapid changes in blood sugar control,” the study added. (IANS)