Purple corn compound may aid in developing future treatments for Type 2 diabetes, kidney disease

September 18, 2012

Diabetic nephropathy is one of the most serious complications related to diabetes, often leading to end-stage kidney disease. Purple corn grown in Peru and Chile is a relative of blue corn, which is readily available in the U.S. The maize is rich in anthocyanins (also known as flavonoids), which are reported to have anti-diabetic properties. Scientists from the Department of Food and Nutrition and Department of Biochemistry at Hallym University in Korea investigated the cellular and molecular activity of purple corn anthocyanins (PCA) to determine whether and how it affects the development of diabetic nephropathy (DN). Their findings suggest that PCA inhibits multiple pathways involved in the development of DN, which may help in developing therapies aimed at type 2 diabetes and kidney disease.

The study is entitled "Purple corn anthocyanins inhibit diabetes-associated glomerular monocyte activation and macrophage infiltration" http://bit.ly/SlrkRY. It appears in the online edition of the – Renal Physiology, published by the (APS).

Methodology

Researcher Min-Kyung Kang and colleagues performed a two-part study, an in vitro experiment investigating the effects of PCA on human endothelial cells cultured under hyperglycemic kidney conditions and an in vivo study that investigated the effects of PCA on kidney tissue in . In the in vitro experiment, were exposed to 1-20 µg/ml of PCA for six hours (control cells were not exposed), then assessed for level of monocyte-endothelial cell adhesion, a major factor in the development of diabetic glomerulosclerosis. In the in vivo experiment, diabetic and control mice were dosed with PCA for eight weeks, then changes in kidney tissue were assessed and immunohistological analyses were performed. Kidney tissue was further analyzed for levels of inflammatory chemokines, which are key components in DN.

Results

Researchers found that in human endothelial cells cultured in hyperglycemic kidney conditions, induction of endothelial cell adhesion molecules decreased in a dose-dependent manner with PCA exposure, meaning that the PCA likely interfered with cell-cell adhesion in glomeruli. PCA also appeared to interfere with leukocyte recruitment and adhesion to glomerular endothelial cells. In diabetic mice, PCA exposure slowed mesangial expansion and interrupted the cellular signaling pathway that may instigate glomerular adhesion and infiltration of inflammatory cells responsible for diabetic glomerulosclerosis. Finally, PCA inhibited levels of macrophage inflammatory protein-2 and monocyte chemotactic protein-1 in , demonstrating that it may inhibit macrophage infiltration, which is closely related to renal inflammation.

Importance of the Findings

The research suggests that anthocyanins may be the main biofunctional compound in purple corn and could protect against mesangial activation of monocytes and infiltration of macrophages in glomeruli—the two major contributors to DN. The research further suggests that renoprotection by PCA against mesangial activation may be specific therapies targeting diabetes-associated diabetic glomerulosclerosis and renal inflammation. Finally, PCA supplementation may be an important strategy in preventing renal vascular disease in type 2 diabetes.

"PCA may be a potential renoprotective agent treating diabetes-associated glomerulosclerosis," wrote the researchers.

Explore further: Researchers replicate human kidney gene changes in mouse model

More information: ajprenal.physiology.org/conten … 6.2012.full.pdf+html

Related Stories

Researchers replicate human kidney gene changes in mouse model

May 23, 2011
University of Louisville researchers have replicated the inflammatory gene changes of a human kidney as it progresses from mild to severe diabetic nephropathy, using a mouse model developed by a UofL researcher, according ...

Joslin researchers gain new understanding of diabetes and kidney disease

July 23, 2012
Scientists at Joslin Diabetes Center have identified biological mechanisms by which glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), a gut hormone, protects against kidney disease, and also mechanisms that inhibit its actions in diabetes. ...

Research aims to prevent diabetic kidney failure

November 5, 2011
The enzyme arginase-2 plays a major role in kidney failure, and blocking the action of this enzyme might lead to protection against renal disease in diabetes, according to researchers.

New findings contribute to understanding of diabetic kidney disease

April 23, 2011
A gene called PVT1 may help reduce the kidneys ability to filter blood, leading to kidney disease, kidney failure and death, according to a study published today by researchers at the Translational Genomics Research Institute ...

Diabetic kidney failure follows a 'ROCK'y road

February 7, 2012
A protein kinase known as ROCK1 can exacerbate an important process called fission in the mitochondria, the power plants of cells, leading to diabetic kidney disease, said researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in a ...

Recommended for you

Long-lasting blood vessel repair in animals via stem cells

October 23, 2017
Stem cell researchers at Emory University School of Medicine have made an advance toward having a long-lasting "repair caulk" for blood vessels. The research could form the basis of a treatment for peripheral artery disease, ...

Synthetic hydrogels deliver cells to repair intestinal injuries

October 23, 2017
By combining engineered polymeric materials known as hydrogels with complex intestinal tissue known as organoids - made from human pluripotent stem cells - researchers have taken an important step toward creating a new technology ...

Study reveals connection between microbiome and autoimmune disorders

October 23, 2017
Many people associate the word "bacteria" with something dirty and disgusting. Dr. Pere Santamaria disagrees. Called the microbiome, the bacteria in our bodies have all kinds of positive effects on our health, Santamaria ...

Engineered protein treatment found to reduce obesity in mice, rats and primates

October 19, 2017
(Medical Xpress)—A team of researchers with pharmaceutical company Amgen Inc. report that an engineered version of a protein naturally found in the body caused test mice, rats and cynomolgus monkeys to lose weight. In their ...

New procedure enables cultivation of human brain sections in the petri dish

October 19, 2017
Researchers at the University of Tübingen have become the first to keep human brain tissue alive outside the body for several weeks. The researchers, headed by Dr. Niklas Schwarz, Dr. Henner Koch and Dr. Thomas Wuttke at ...

Cancer drug found to offer promising results in treating sepsis in test mice

October 19, 2017
(Medical Xpress)—A combined team of researchers from China and the U.S. has found that a drug commonly used to treat lung cancer in humans offers a degree of protection against sepsis in test mice. In their paper published ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.