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Diabetes: Vitamin D receptors as a new therapy option

Diabetes: Vitamin D receptors as a new therapy option


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What role does the vitamin D receptor play in diabetes?

A special receptor appears to be a potential therapeutic target in the prevention and treatment of diabetes. This finding could protect against the development of diabetes and counteract the damage to the pancreatic cells caused by the progression of the disease.

The current study by the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) found that maintaining levels of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) in the cells of the pancreas can help protect against the development of diabetes and through the progression of Prevent damage caused by illness. The results of the study were published in the English-language journal "Diabetes".

New goal to treat diabetes?

Maintaining vitamin D receptor (VDR) levels in the pancreatic cells, which synthesize and secrete insulin, could help protect against the development of diabetes and counter damage to the pancreatic cells caused by disease progression. This receptor could serve as a potential therapeutic target in the prevention and treatment of the disease.

Researchers examined the role of the vitamin D receptor

Vitamin D deficiency has already been linked to a higher prevalence of both type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes. An association of the disease with variations in the vitamin D receptor gene has been described. However, the specific involvement of this vitamin receptor in the development of the disease, especially in the β cells, is still unknown. That is why the new study focused on understanding the role of VDR in the development of diabetes. The behavior of the receptor in mice was examined.

How to protect vitamin D receptors from diabetes

The researchers observed a lower VDR expression in the pancreatic islets of mice with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. They also found that overexpression of VDR in beta cells from diabetic mice counteracts the disease. At the same time, it has been shown that sustained levels of vitamin D receptors in these cells can maintain their mass and function and protect them against diabetes.

Maintenance of VDR expression prevented damage to β cells

These results suggest that the maintenance of VDR expression could contribute significantly to counteract damage to the β cells and to protect against the development of the disease.

New role of the vitamin D receptor identified

"Persistent VDR levels protected transgenic mice against the development of severe hyperglycaemia, whereby the mass of the β cells was partially preserved, thereby reducing local inflammation and diabetes," says study author Dr. Alba Casellas from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona in a press release. This shows a previously unknown role of the vitamin D receptor in the pathophysiology of diabetes.

Efficacy of vitamin D for the prevention of diabetes is controversial

Although the benefits of vitamin D supplementation as a diabetes preventive have been reported, clinical data on its effectiveness in improving the condition of diabetes are controversial. "Discrepancies in the effectiveness of vitamin D supplements can be due to the negative regulation of the VDR in diabetes," explains Dr. Casellas.

Does the dosing schedule of vitamin D supplements need to be reconsidered?

The researchers suggest that in order to achieve positive results, the dosage regimen of vitamin D supplementation should be planned if there is no decrease in VDR expression. "Therefore, future strategies for treating diabetes should be based on better understanding of the mechanisms that negatively regulate VDR during diabetes and focus on restoring VDR levels," the researchers added. (as)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the requirements of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.

Swell:

  • Meritxell Morró, Laia Vilà, Sylvie Franckhauser, Cristina Mallol, Gemma Elias et al .: Vitamin D Receptor overexpression in β-cells ameliorates diabetes in mice, in Diabetes (published 02/14/2020), Diabetes
  • Mantenir els nivells del receptor de vitamina D en les cèl·lules productores d'insulina podria protegir enfront de la diabetis, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (published 03/26/2020), UAB



Video: Vitamin D and VDR polymorphisms in T1DM - Video abstract ID 201525 (May 2022).