University of Leeds - Discovery could open hearts

May 20, 2010

Scientists have uncovered a new molecule that could protect diabetics from the heart damage associated with insulin treatment. A team of vascular biologists at the University of Leeds found that a naturally occurring substance known as C-peptide protects blood vessels from damage. Insulin on its own causes some cells in the blood vessels to grow more than they should, leading to a narrowing of the passageway through which blood reaches the heart. However, when C-peptide was administered alongside insulin, as happens naturally in non-diabetics, the excessive growth and movement of cells ceased.

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