A survey conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that India will have 8 crore patients suffering from Type 2 diabetes by 2030. As widespread obesity is increasing in Several pockets of India, the combination of obesity and diabetes is going to affect the patients in multiple ways. And the major effect of this dual blow is a high risk of cardiac-related issues.
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Based on a study conducted by Central University of Gujarat (CUG) stated how obesity and diabetes are affecting atherosclerosis or blockage in blood vessels. A team led by associate professor Umesh C S Yadav of Metabolic Disorders and Inflammatory Pathologies Laboratory (MDIPL) at School of Life Sciences, CUG, along with doctoral students Rohit Patel and Johnna F Varghese found that the protein ERK5, an important molecule that regulates levels of nitric oxide and helps maintain contraction and relaxation of vessels, declines severely in the presence of excessive glucose.
“The protein is crucial to maintain endothelial cells that line the interior surface of blood vessels. It protects the cells against stress caused because of high-pressure blood flow due to hypertension, also identified as shearing stress. It was not known how the protein behaves in endothelial cells of patients with diabetes and metabolic stress,” said Yadav.
The researchers also figured out how low-density lipoprotein (LDL), also identified as bad cholesterol, affects endothelial cells. The team found that both increased glucose and oxidized-LDL severely decrease ERK5 levels, further decreasing nitric oxide levels and causing inflammation and dysfunction of cells.
“The dysfunctional endothelial cells trap immune cells forming a local lesion which later develops in plaques — the main complication behind the majority of cardiovascular issues including heart blockage that results in fatal heart attacks,” said Yadav, a Ramanujan Fellow of the department of science and technology (DST), Govt of India, adding that identification of ERK5 as a critical protein for the health of blood vessels in diabetics and obese patients can make progress towards the prevention and treatment of cardiac issues in these patients.
With this, they concluded the solution “We found that a plant-based molecule called fisetin, which is found in many fruits and vegetables like apples, strawberries, grapes, onions, and cucumbers, etc, upregulated and restored the level of ERK5. It confirms the fact that a balanced diet is a pre-requisite for a healthy lifestyle,” said Yadav.
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NEWS SOURCE: Economic Times
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