Worood Sirhan and Ron Piran* Pages 2922 - 2944 ( 23 )
Cells are mainly dependent on glucose as their energy source. Multicellular organisms need to adequately control individual glucose uptake by the cells, and the insulin-glucagon endocrine system serves as the key glucose regulation mechanism. Insulin allows for effective glucose entry into the cells when blood glucose levels are high, and glucagon acts as its opponent, balancing low blood glucose levels. A lack of insulin will prevent glucose entry to the cells, resulting in glucose accumulation in the bloodstream. Diabetes is a disease which is characterized by elevated blood glucose levels. All diabetes types are characterized by an inefficient insulin signaling mechanism. This could be the result of insufficient insulin secretion, as in the case of type I diabetes and progressive incidents of type II diabetes or due to insufficient response to insulin (known as insulin resistance). We emphasize here, that Diabetes is actually a disease of starved tissues, unable to absorb glucose (and other nutrients), and not a disease of high glucose levels. Indeed, diabetic patients, prior to insulin discovery, suffered from glucose malabsorption.In this mini-review, we will define diabetes, discuss the current status of diabetes treatments, review the current knowledge of the different hormones that participate in glucose homeostasis and the employment of different modulators of these hormones. As this issue deals with peptide therapeutics, special attention will be given to synthetic peptide analogs, peptide agonists as well as antagonists.
Glucose Homeostasis, Glycemia, Insulin, Glucagon, Somatostatin, Agonists and Antagonists.
The Laboratory for Diabetes and Regenerative Medicine, Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, Bar-Ilan University, Safed, The Laboratory for Diabetes and Regenerative Medicine, Azrieli Faculty of Medicine, Bar-Ilan University, Safed