Insulin may be the key link between obesity and the risk of developing dementia. A new study suggests that a high-sugar diet causes insulin resistance in the brain, which may increase the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s disease.
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On the one hand, obesity increases the risk of developing neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, but the exact mechanisms of this link were unknown. However, excessive consumption of foods rich in sugar is the main cause of obesity and its complications. On the other hand, some epidemiological work conducted in humans establishes a link between poor diet and the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, by modifying our brain.
A new study published in the journal PLOS Biology Explains how diets that promote obesity may contribute to increased risk of developing neurodegenerative disorders. researched on DrosophilesDrosophiles – a type of fruit fly – suggests that insulin resistance induced by too much sugar in the diet may disrupt the ability of glial cells BrainBrain To eliminate neuronal debris. This process is decisive preventionprevention Of neurodegeneration.
Drosophila was not chosen as the subject of study without reason. Actually, this fly eats fruit sugar and there are physical similarities between speciesspecies And man. , We found that when we fed flies a high-sugar diet, it caused remarkable physiological changes that mirror the effects of diabetesdiabetes Type 2 in humans, which also involves insulin resistanceExplained to researcher Akhila Rajan new atlas, Flies are fed a diet rich in sugar, so they are an excellent model for understanding what goes wrong in humans., ,
Promising results for humans
The researchers first showed that a high-sugar diet caused insulin resistance in the peripheral organs of flies and then in their brains. They focused specifically on glial cells because their dysfunction leads to neuronal degeneration. Study shows that reduces levels of insulin resistance proteinprotein PI3k and Draper in glial cells, disrupting their neuronal debris removal functions. The incident highlighted is phagocytephagocyteAn essential cellular mechanism for the elimination of agents pathogenspathogens and dead or inactive particles. However, it is generally accepted that the diseases are linked MadnessMadness (like Alzheimer’s) characterized by the brain’s inability to eliminate toxic proteins (amyloid proteins in the case of Alzheimer’s).
These results open new perspectives CaseCase Of treatmentstreatments Preventive measures against Alzheimer’s disease, for example by increasing circulating insulin levels. A clinical trialsclinical trials Phase 2 trials of an intranasal insulin spray recently designed for deliveryhormoneshormones Directly to the brain, which could potentially improve cognitive health. The first results were ” a little promising ,
In short, if there are good reasons to believe that alterations in insulin signaling play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s disease, we will need to better understand how the results obtained in Drosophila translate to humans.