Evolution In Methods Of Diabetic Treatment

2178 words - 9 pages

Glucose is an important factor for many physiological processes in the body such as glycolysis, food digestion and cellular respiration (Sugar: The Good,The Bad and The Ugly). It is the most convenient source of cellular energy and is either metabolized immediately for the body’s utilization or it can be secured as fat for future use. When glucose enters the body it is regulated by pancreatic hormones called glucagon and insulin. These specific cells are biologically synthesized to either increase or deplete blood glucose levels within the body. The insulin hormone, which is found in beta cells, starts off as pro-insulin a single chain polypeptide which is created in the endoplasmic reticulum. Pro-insulin is transported to the Golgi apparatus where enzymes known as proteases break down the pro-insulin and transforms it from a single stranded polypeptide into a disulfide bond hexamer known as “mature insulin” (Jubiz). Insulin serves as the key to unlock the plasma membrane so that extracellular glucose can be integrated into the cells (Eric P. Widmaier). According to the 2004 edition of Human Physiology, The Mechanisms of Body Function, insulin binds to particular receptors on the plasma membrane in target cells and stimulates the signaling of Glucose transporter proteins. These proteins fuse with the plasma membrane and allow glucose to be moved into the cell via facilitated diffusion. Glucagon is formed by alpha cells and is most effective in the liver where gluconeogenesis takes place. In the opposite light of insulin, glucagon is used to naturally create sugar when the body deems necessary, such as in times of stress and or starvation . It is due to the functions and key products of both glucagon secretion and insulin secretion that the type of regulation at hand is feedback inhibition.
In January 26th 2011 it was recorded that over 25 million people in the United States alone suffer from diabetes (Associtaion). A little over 8 percent of the U.S. population is diabetics with new cases being diagnosed every day. Amongst all ethnicities that commonly develop this disease the African American race leads the majority with a percentage of 12.6 percent. The Hispanic community ranks second with 11.8 percent with Caucasians and Asian Americans consisting of the lower percentages in the U.S. An article, posted by the World Health Organization, stated that as of August 2011 over 346 million people worldwide suffer from diabetes. Sources reported that 10.9 million people in the United States that are 65 and older had diabetes while patients 20 years and younger have the disease. Physiological complications resulting from diabetes include nerve damage in the eyes, fingers, feet with heart disease being the lead cause of diabetes related deaths (National Diabetes Information).
Originally, during ancient times diabetes was classified as a death sentence amongst those who developed the disease. Among many ancient medical philosophers the description...

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