May 1 (UPI) — Two naturally occurring hormones that play major roles in type 2 diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease have been identified in mice — could have beneficial effects in humans — according to a study.
UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine geneticists have developed a technique that looks for these molecules — notum and lipocalin-5 — that influence how organs and tissues communicate with each other. The findings, which the researchers ultimately hope will lead to new drugs to curb the medical conditions, were published Tuesday in the journal Cell Metabolism.
The technique pursues alternate routes of tissue-to-tissue communication.
The molecules serve different purposes. Ipocalin-5 keeps mice from developing diabetes or cures it.
Lipocalin-5 reduces risk for obesity and diabetes by allowing the muscle tissue’s ability to metabolize and absorb dietary nutrients.
The researchers used data to sort through the array of hormones that circulate in the bloodstream, and their individual functions.
After identifying and studying hormonal networks in mice, researchers tested to see if functions assigned to the hormones were the same in humans — which they are.
Researchers next want to find out how these two hormones in humans communicate between unrelated types of tissue.
Additionally, they plan to investigate whether tissue-to-tissue communication works across different ethnicities and diseases.