Ancient Wisdom: Chinese extract may yield diabetes treatment

1:01pm, June 7, 2006

A plant extract used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat type 2 diabetes could form the basis for new treatments for the disease, scientists now report.

In some cases of type 2 diabetes, a person's pancreas doesn't produce enough insulin, a hormone that prompts cells to take in blood sugar. Studies have indicated that a substance called uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2), which is also secreted by pancreatic cells, reduces how much insulin is produced.

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