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Student News Bulletin

This week, we look at three new pieces of research. The University of Lincoln finds the final piece in the puzzle for Diabetes 1, a long-term study on ageing sheds some light on the connection between healthy ageing and genetics and could dark chocolate enhance sports performance?

New Diabetes 1 research
New research published in the journal Diabetes, gives a complete picture of areas that the immune system is attacking in cases of Type 1 Diabetes. The condition is characterised by the destruction of beta cells by the immune system. Beta cells produce insulin, a hormone which keeps blood sugar levels under control.

Areas targeted by the immune system are:

  • Insulin
  • Glutamate decarboxylase
  • IA-2
  • Zinc transporter-8
  • And the final piece of the puzzle, tetraspanin-7

Dr Michael Christie, who led the research at the University of Lincoln, said: “With this new discovery, we have now finished identifying what the immune system is targeting – we have the complete picture.” Read more

New gene study sheds light on the key to healthy ageing
Reseachers running long-term study named ‘Wellderly’, which was launched in the US in 2007, have published their findings in the journal Cell. The study applied whole genome sequencing to the DNA of more than 1,400 healthy individuals from the US aged 80-105 years. Comparing the results to 1507 individuals representative of the general population, they found that the Wellderly group had a lower genetic risk for Alzheimer’s and coronary heart disease. Read more.

Does dark chocolate increase sports performance?
Interesting news for any budding sports nutritionists out there, research published in The Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, indicates that chocolate may enhance sports performance. Elite athletes already use beetroot for the same effect. Nitrites in the beetroot convert to nitric oxide causing blood vessels to dilate and reducing oxygen consumption. Similarly, one of the flavanols in dark chocolate, epicatechin, also increases nitric oxide levels in the blood. Read more.

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