JUL 11, 2018 02:56 AM PDT

Blood Pressure Medication 'Verapamil' Stimulates Insulin Production

WRITTEN BY: Nouran Amin
4 11 455

A common blood pressure medication, verapamil, may improve outcomes for patients with Type 1 diabetes.

According to researchers at the University of Alabama (UAB) at Birmingham Comprehensive Diabetes Center, diabetes affects more than 30 million Americans. Now, research at UAB has led to the discovery of a "safe and effective novel therapy to reduce insulin requirements and hypoglycemic episodes in adult subjects with recent onset Type 1 diabetes."

Furthermore, verapamil, which is administered orally, will allow the patient's body to produce their very own insulin which limits the number of insulin injections needed.

"While this research is not an end-all cure for Type 1 diabetes, these findings are getting us closer to disease-altering therapies that can enable individuals with Type 1 diabetes to have more control over their disease and maintain some of their body's own insulin production," said Anath Shalev, director of UAB's CDC.

Published in Nature Medicine, the research team at UAB found a way to promote the patient's own beta cell function and insulin production.

When Shalev discovered that verapamil reversed the effects of Type 1 diabetes, human trials began.

Over a year, the clinical trials studied 24 patients between the ages of 18-45. 11 of these patients received the blood pressure medication and the other 13 received a placebo.

"Although this is a smaller sample group, our trial results give us promise that subjects with Type 1 diabetes have therapy options and that we are nearing a more effective way to deal with this disease," said Fernando Ovalle, director of UAB's Comprehensive Diabetes Clinic and co-principal investigator of the study. "Beyond verapamil allowing subjects with Type 1 diabetes the ability to live a life with less external insulin dependence, these findings will impact the quality of life that they can have."

By improving blood sugar control, patients suffering from Type 1 diabetes will experience fewer heart attacks, blindness, kidney disease and other issues.

 

About the Author
  • Nouran enjoys writing on various topics including science & medicine, global health, and conservation biology. She hopes through her writing she can make science more engaging and communicable to the general public.
You May Also Like
APR 02, 2018
Drug Discovery
APR 02, 2018
'Fish Hooks' Speed Up Drug Discovery
  DNA-encoded chemical library (DECL), containing about 35 million different drugs, is a new screening method developed to speed up drug discovery. Th
APR 15, 2018
Drug Discovery
APR 15, 2018
Monoclonal Antibody May Serve as Treatment for Malaria
A study published in Nature Medicine examines a monoclonal antibody isolated from the blood of individuals vaccinated for malaria and its potential role in
MAY 08, 2018
Drug Discovery
MAY 08, 2018
Promising Treatment for Alcoholism
Investigators at the University of Texas at Austin have successfully used animal models to examine a drug believed to inhibit the symptoms of alcohol withd
MAY 08, 2018
Drug Discovery
MAY 08, 2018
No More Hair Loss? Osteoporosis Drug Treats Baldness
    According to The University of Manchester's Centre for Dermatology Research, a recent developed drug can lessen the stress experienced by
MAY 30, 2018
Chemistry & Physics
MAY 30, 2018
Melatonin-It's Complicated
Melatonin is a hormone that regulates sleep and wakefulness through activating the melatonin receptors in the central nervous system. It is naturally produ
JUN 29, 2018
Technology
JUN 29, 2018
Amazon Buys Online Pharmacy PillPack, Drugstore Stocks Tumble
Online Pharmacy PillPack Now Belongs to Amazon
Loading Comments...