Features | Partner Sites | Information | LinkXpress
Sign In
PZ HTL SA
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC
GLOBETECH PUBLISHING LLC

Microgel Insulin Delivery System Mimics Beta-Cell Action

By BiotechDaily International staff writers
Posted on 31 Jul 2013
Diabetes researchers have developed a nanotech technique to transport insulin in the bloodstream and release or sequester the hormone in response to changes in blood sugar levels.

Investigators at the University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill, USA) and their colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, USA) used a one-step electrospray procedure to fabricate monodisperse microgels consisting of a pH-responsive chitosan matrix, enzyme nanocapsules, and recombinant human insulin. Glucose-specific enzymes were covalently encapsulated into the nanocapsules to improve enzymatic stability by protecting from denaturation and immunogenicity as well as to minimize loss due to diffusion from the matrix.

The microgel system swelled and released insulin when subjected to hyperglycemic conditions, as a result of the enzymatic conversion of glucose into gluconic acid and protonation of the chitosan network. The microgels acted as a self-regulating valve system by secreting insulin at basal release rates under normoglycemic conditions and at higher rates under hyperglycemic conditions.

Results published in the July 8, 2013, online edition of the journal ACS Nano revealed that in a mouse model of type I diabetes microgel-facilitated insulin release caused a reduction of blood glucose levels that lasted for more than 48 hours.

“The chitosan itself can be absorbed by the body, so there are no long term health effects,” said first author Dr. Zhen Gu, assistant professor of biomedical engineering the University of North Carolina. “We wanted to mimic the function of healthy beta-cells, which produce insulin and control its release in a healthy body, but what we have found also holds promise for smart drug delivery targeting cancer or other diseases.”

Related Links:
University of North Carolina
Massachusetts Institute of Technology



comments powered by Disqus

Channels

Genomics/Proteomics

view channel

New Program Encourages Wide Distribution of Genomic Data

A new data sharing program allows genomics researchers and practitioners to analyze, visualize, and share raw sequence data for individual patients or across populations straight from a local browser. The sequencing revolution is providing the raw data required to identify the genetic variants underlying rare diseases... Read more

Lab Technologies

view channel

Experimental Physicists Find Clues into How Radiotherapy Kills Cancer Cells

A new discovery in experimental physics has implications for a better determination of the process in which radiotherapy destroys cancer cells. Dr. Jason Greenwood from Queen’s University Belfast (Ireland) Center for Plasma Physics collaborated with scientists from Italy and Spain on the work on electrons, and published... Read more

Business

view channel

Interest in Commercial Applications for Proteomics Continues to Grow

Increasing interest in the field of proteomics has led to a series of agreements between private proteomic companies and academic institutions as well as deals between pharmaceutical companies and novel proteomics innovator biotech companies. Proteomics is the study of the structure and function of proteins.... Read more
 
Copyright © 2000-2014 Globetech Media. All rights reserved.