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ZnO nanoparticlesPUNE: In a breakthrough discovery, scientists at the Agharkar Research Institute (ARI) here have shown that zinc oxide nanoparticles could be used for treating both non-insulin dependent (Type I) and insulin dependent (Type II) diabetes. What's more important is that the drug is patient-friendly as just one pill a day will keep blood sugar levels under control. The scientists have successfully carried out laboratory tests on rats and the study has been published in the renowned medical journal Nanomedicine on February 21.

Kishore Paknikar, who is heading the study along with Rinku Umrani from the Centre for Nanobioscience at ARI, said, "It is for the first time that oral administration of zinc oxide nanoparticles have shown that blood glucose levels can be reduced in both Type I and Type II diabetic rats. Additionally, the treatment could also take care of the associated ill-effects such as elevated triglyceride (type of fat) levels. The zinc oxide nanoparticles treatment is also expected to delay progression of diabetes and its complications."

The scientists have been working on developing a common drug for both Type I and Type II diabetes for the past five years. "The most important facet of this study is that patients will have to take just one pill a day to avoid or reduce the need for insulin injections," Paknikar said. A part of the nanoparticles, when consumed, gets dissolved while the rest of the particulate part continuously releases zinc ions into the blood stream for nearly 24 hours.

Paknikar, however, said it would be a long time before the treatment would be applicable to humans. "We will go in for a trial on genetically-modified animals, which would constitute the second phase of our study. We are approaching industries for a tie-up as it will be an expensive exercise. Once these trials are successful, we will go in for human trials, but that may take about 8-10 years to complete."

Umrani said, "This discovery offers hope to millions of diabetics across the world. We have earlier reported on the beneficial effects of 'jasada bhasma', which is an indigenous version of zinc oxide used in Ayurveda for treating diabetes. However, we have found that zinc oxide nanoparticles act in a far more superior manner than the indigenous treatment." The scientists have cautioned that the results were only preliminary, tested in the laboratory on animals and that the zinc oxide nanoparticles have not been made into a drug for treating diabetes.

Source: The Times of India

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0 #2 Sangeetha 2014-02-11 09:36
very nice article and quiet intersting.
+2 #1 Prof. C. Karunakaran 2013-02-25 05:53

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