MAR 25, 2019 10:36 AM PDT

Investigational Drug Reverses High Cholesterol and Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin

A novel molecular pathway was recently discovered for an enzyme inhibitor in humans that is implicated in the development of high cholesterol and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Such conditions were found to be reversed in a mouse model using an investigational oral drug. The drug is known as TM5614 and is reported in a new research study to impede the actions of a multifunctional protein in the body known as plasminogen activator inhibitor 1, or PAI-1.

"High blood levels of PAI-1 are a hallmark of obesity, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome, a cluster of risk factors for obesity-related diseases," said the study's lead researcher, Joshua Levine, M.D., Ph.D., an endocrinology fellow at Northwestern.

Learn more about non-alcoholic fatty liver disease:

The study was conducted based on findings that individuals who inherited a loss-of-function mutation in the gene that codes for PAI-1 have developed lower fasting insulin levels than those with unaffected relatives and appear protected from developing diabetes. Therefore, researchers were curious to see if blocking PAI-1 could reverse diet-induced obesity and its related health problems.

Specifically, the study investigated induced obesity in mice by feeding them a high-fat, high-sugar mice chow equivalent to fast food. Mice were then treated with the PAI-1 inhibitor TM5614. Results showed that after a week of treatment, the mice had improved fasting levels of blood sugar, insulin and LDL, or "bad" cholesterol, in compassion to untreated mice. Additionally, treated mice exhibited a "remarkable" reduction in fatty liver disease.

Learn more about LDL, “bad” cholesterol:

"This is important because PCSK9 inhibitors are the newest drug therapy available for the treatment of high cholesterol for people who do not benefit enough from statin cholesterol-lowering medicines or cannot tolerate statins," Levine said. "However, the high cost of these drugs limits their use, and they are injections, rather than pills. The drug may eventually become a less expensive and easier alternative to PCSK9 inhibitors."

Source: The Endocrine Society

About the Author
  • Nouran is a scientist, educator, and life-long learner with a passion for making science more communicable. When not busy in the lab isolating blood macrophages, she enjoys writing on various STEM topics.
You May Also Like
MAR 03, 2021
Drug Discovery & Development
Keeping HIV Latent
MAR 03, 2021
Keeping HIV Latent
When (HIV) human immunodeficiency virus infects cells, it can go to sleep as opposed to make viral copies of itself&mdas ...
APR 01, 2021
Microbiology
Mapping the Wild Microbiome to Search for Therapeutic Agents
APR 01, 2021
Mapping the Wild Microbiome to Search for Therapeutic Agents
Many people think of bacteria as disgusting germs, but there are plenty of important bacterial species that provide us w ...
MAY 06, 2021
Cannabis Sciences
New CBD Analog Outperforms Regular CBD for Pain Relief
MAY 06, 2021
New CBD Analog Outperforms Regular CBD for Pain Relief
Researchers from Temple University Health System have found that a novel cannabidiol (CBD) analog can reverse pain sensi ...
MAY 11, 2021
Genetics & Genomics
Gene Therapy Trial for Severe Immune Disorder is Successful
MAY 11, 2021
Gene Therapy Trial for Severe Immune Disorder is Successful
Severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID), which virtually eliminates a patient's immune system, and severely affects thei ...
MAY 27, 2021
Neuroscience
Research Less Likely to Be True is Cited More
MAY 27, 2021
Research Less Likely to Be True is Cited More
Researchers from the University of California San Diego have found that non-replicable data is cited 153 times more ofte ...
JUN 01, 2021
Immunology
Nanoparticles Designed to Enhance Seasonal Flu Vaccines
JUN 01, 2021
Nanoparticles Designed to Enhance Seasonal Flu Vaccines
Seasonal flu vaccines only work around 40 to 60 percent of the time, says the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Preve ...
Loading Comments...