IBRI DIABETES CENTER (IDC) - CONSIDINE LAB
Focus: Understanding diabetes and its complications
How does the brain respond to sweet taste?
IDC Director Dr. Robert Considine, who joined the IBRI in the fall of 2018, and his team continue to conduct research into better understanding diabetes and they are making progress on a number of fronts.
With funding from the American Diabetes Association, Dr. Considine’s lab team continues to collaborate with Dr. David Kareken and his team at the Indiana University School of Medicine to investigate how the brain responds to sweet taste, and how this response changes following gastric bypass surgery. A reduction in subject preference for sweet taste following surgery has been reported, but the brain areas responsible for this effect are unknown.
Using magnetic resonance imaging and the administration of sucrose to the tongue, the investigative team is measuring the activation of brain areas, including the primary gustatory cortex and reward areas. These studies may lead to a non-surgical solution to reduce the consumption of sweetened high-calorie foods and beverages.
The health benefit of nut consumption
In collaboration with Dr. Richard Mattes, a leading nutrition scientist at Purdue University’s College of Health and Human Sciences, Dr. Considine’s team is also studying the ingestion of almonds as a means to reduce blood sugar, which will determine if the health benefits of the nuts are driven by the presence of greater body fat in the abdominal or gluteal region.
A manuscript describing the findings of this two-year clinical trial will be published in 2021. This study continues a long-standing collaboration between Drs. Considine and Mattes, which has already yielded three publications on the health benefits of nut consumption.
Collaborations result in publications
Collaborations with investigators at the IU School of Medicine, Purdue University and University of Illinois-Chicago resulted in nine publications in 2019 and 2020 on a number of diabetes-related topics.
- Five studies investigated the role of inflammation in polycystic ovarian syndrome (PMID: 32830548, PMC: 7259366, PMC: 7150616, PMC: 6773460, PMC: 6364509).
- The sixth study tested oligomeric collagen as an encapsulation material for islet/β-cell replacement (PMC: 7473915).
- The seventh study examined the effects of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass on glomerular filtration rate (PMC: 7470048).
- The eighth study tested treprostinil and metformin normalization of hyperglycemia to improve cardiac function in pulmonary hypertension associated heart failure (PMC: 7255946).
- One publication described the ninth study as a trial to test feasibility, mechanism and cognitive function effects of a multicomponent intervention that included foods high in polyphenols (PMC: 6721976).