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Microtubules control the mechanism of insulin secretion
Update time:2019-08-15 18:28:10   【 Font: Large  Medium Small

Microtubules play an important role in cell secretion, transporting intracellular substances to the cell membrane for secretion. Professor Clea Barcena of the University of California, Berkeley, and her team found that microtubules act as cell "monitors" to accurately control insulin secretion in pancreatic beta cells and found that this monitoring disorder may lead to beta cell dysfunction, which in turn leads to type 2 diabetes. Therefore, the research team took the regulation of microtubules targeting insulin secretion as a new research direction. This research direction may provide a new way to treat diabetes.
Professor Clea Barcena and her team used a model of pancreatic beta cells to study the function of microtubules and explore how they "transport" substances such as insulin particles from inside cells to outside. The researchers first used the compound to destroy the microtubules, then stimulated islet beta cells with glucose and measured insulin production. Because microtubules are destroyed, insulin production is theoretically reduced. But they measured a large increase in insulin. "In any model we tested, the destruction of microtubules increased insulin production," Barcena said. "Do microtubules inhibit secretion?"
To explain this, the researchers used ultra-resolution microscopy to find that in beta cells, microtubules are not a straight transport channel, but a complex network.
"Insulin particles travel across a network of microtubules, a behavior that regulates the number of particles to prevent oversecretion," Barcena said. Based on the findings, the researchers suggest that disrupting microtubules, delivering targeted drugs to the pancreas and increasing insulin production, could be a way to treat diabetes.

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