A protein that can reduce overproduction of insulin has been found by scientists at the University of Copenhagen.
The researchers found that removing the protein GRP94 resulted in a significant reduction in insulin production. The GRP94 protein supports the folding of proinsulin within the pancreas, a process which converts it into insulin.
Excessive insulin production, known as hyperinsulinemia, can lead to insulin resistance, the hallmark of type 2 diabetes, prediabetes and metabolic syndrome.
Dr Michal Tomasz Marzec, who led the study, said: “Even though proinsulin has a relatively short sequence, it still needs help acquiring the right structure to become mature, functional insulin.
Removing the protein did not impact the productivity of insulin-producing beta cells, the results found. Dr Marzec commented: “This is surprising because one would anticipate that the beta cells would die from stress when huge amounts of misfolded proinsulin accumulate inside the cells. It is like removing the bearing beam without weakening the construction.
“This indicates that the GRP94 protein plays a very specialized function and that beta cells are well-prepared to mount effective responses to deal with consequences of misfolding of proinsulin. We are currently working to understand these responses and their biological and pathological consequences.”
While researchers are looking at ways to decrease insulin production artificially, there are natural ways to reduce excess insulin production. Following a low carb lifestyle can reduce insulin levels and insulin resistance.
Many people who have followed the Low Carb Program have experienced a return to healthy blood glucose levels which can result from a resolution of excess insulin and insulin resistance.
Almost 400,000 people have registered since November 2015 and one-year results from a sample of participants, published last summer, demonstrated reductions in HbA1c and weight loss and enabled people to achieve remission of type 2 diabetes.
The study has been published in the journal Diabetes.

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