About Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels

Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels

Font : A-A+

  • Type 1 diabetes occurs when there is no insulin to let glucose into the cells, this could increase the sugar buildup in the bloodstream.
  • New technique uses modified insulin and red blood cells to develop a glucose-responsive “smart” insulin delivery system.
  • The modified insulin and red blood cells were found to effectively reduce the blood sugar levels.

A new technique that uses modified insulin and red blood cells could help to create a glucose-responsive 'smart' insulin delivery system, finds a new research study from North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Research Study
The technique in an animal model study has found to effectively reduce the blood sugar levels for 48 hours in a mice strain which had type 1 diabetes.


Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels

The research team has also modified insulin by binding it to a glucose derivative which is called glucosamine; this could bind to glucose transporters on the surface of the red blood cells and would effectively attach the insulin to the red blood cell.

The process would result in a red blood cell that is studded with insulin molecules. These insulin-loaded blood cells could then be injected into a mice with type 1 diabetes.

When the cells reach the bloodstream, they interact with the environment. If the blood glucose levels are high, the molecules may effectively displace the glucosamine in the blood cells glucose transporters. When the glucosamine is set free in the blood cell, insulin will also be released.

The released insulin is capable of binding to insulin receptors in the liver, muscles and fatty tissues that are capable of triggering a process that reduces the blood glucose levels.

Zhen Gu, associate professor in the joint biomedical engineering program at NC State and UNC, said, "In short, this is a fully biocompatible smart system that responds, when needed, to normalize glucose levels in the blood."

The research team also compared mice receiving the modified insulin and blood cell system which could be divided into three other groups
  • The first group received saline
  • The second group received modified insulin
  • The third group received a mixture of unmodified insulin and red blood cells
Study Findings
The diabetic mice that received the modified insulin and blood cell system demonstrated a significant reduction in the blood glucose levels for more than two days.

The performance of other groups saw an initial dip in the blood glucose levels but were found to return to high glucose levels within 12 hours.

The drug combinations were also tested in a group of healthy mice. Scientists found that the modified insulin and blood cell system has reduced the risk of hypoglycemia when compared to other drug combinations.

Modified Insulin and Nanoparticle System
The research team also conducted experiments on diabetic mice using modified insulin and nanoparticles that were coated with the red blood cell membranes.

The nanoparticle modified insulin also showed similar results to that of those used modified insulin and red blood cells.

"This is a positive result, because it bodes well for developing a standardized means of delivering this glucose regulation system," Gu said.

Dr. John Buse, professor of medicine at the UNC School of Medicine and director of the UNC Diabetes Care Center and the NC Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute, said, "The team will further evaluate the long-term biocompatibility of the modified insulin system in an animal model before determining whether to move to clinical trials."

"The vision, if realized, would be one of the most exciting advances in diabetes care."

Gu, said, "We are also exploring the use of painless microneedles to deliver this system, rather than relying on the conventional injections which were used in this study."

"The possibility of using a different drug delivery system makes it difficult to assess cost, but we're optimistic that the cost of the potential formulation would be comparable to existing treatments."

  1. Chao Wang, Yanqi Ye, Wujin Sun, Jicheng Yu, Jingqiang Wang, David S. Lawrence, John B. Buse, Zhen Gu. Red Blood Cells for Glucose-Responsive Insulin Delivery. Advanced Materials, 2017; 29 (18): 1606617 DOI: 10.1002/adma.201606617

Source: Medindia

Citations   close

Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:

  • APA

    Madhumathi Palaniappan. (2017, May 09). Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels. Medindia. Retrieved on May 24, 2022 from https://www.medindia.net/news/healthwatch/modified-insulin-and-red-blood-cells-could-regulate-blood-sugar-levels-169924-1.htm.

  • MLA

    Madhumathi Palaniappan. "Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels". Medindia. May 24, 2022. <https://www.medindia.net/news/healthwatch/modified-insulin-and-red-blood-cells-could-regulate-blood-sugar-levels-169924-1.htm>.

  • Chicago

    Madhumathi Palaniappan. "Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels". Medindia. https://www.medindia.net/news/healthwatch/modified-insulin-and-red-blood-cells-could-regulate-blood-sugar-levels-169924-1.htm. (accessed May 24, 2022).

  • Harvard

    Madhumathi Palaniappan. 2021. Modified Insulin and Red Blood Cells Could Regulate Blood Sugar Levels. Medindia, viewed May 24, 2022, https://www.medindia.net/news/healthwatch/modified-insulin-and-red-blood-cells-could-regulate-blood-sugar-levels-169924-1.htm.


News A-Z
What's New on Medindia
Can Weight Loss be Achieved by Drinking Water?
Can Exercise Counts Boost Your Life Counts? 
Prevent Hacking of Medical Devices: FDA Sounds Alarm
View all
Recommended Reading
News Archive
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Thalassemia Diabetes - Essentials Parkinsons Disease Surgical Treatment Diabetes - Self-Monitoring of Blood Glucose (SMBG) Gestational diabetes Type 2 Diabetes Decoding HbA1c Test for Blood Sugar Diabetes - Foot Care Diabesity Hunger Fullness and Weight Control 

Most Popular on Medindia

Drug Side Effects Calculator Indian Medical Journals Noscaphene (Noscapine) Blood - Sugar Chart Blood Pressure Calculator Find a Doctor Diaphragmatic Hernia Post-Nasal Drip Iron Intake Calculator How to Reduce School Bag Weight - Simple Tips

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2022

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use
open close