(ATHENS, Ohio — Dec. 5, 2014) A drug developed at the Ohio
University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine shows promise in
halting the onset of obesity-related type 2 diabetes. Lab results
from preclinical studies found the drug made treatment groups, which
were on a high fat diet, more insulin sensitive, halted an increase
in fat mass, and prevented the onset of type 2 diabetes.
implications are enormous,” said Kelly McCall, Ph.D., associate
professor of endocrinology at the Heritage College. “This drug could
significantly change the treatment protocol for Type 2 diabetes.”
McCall, her research team, and colleague Frank Schwartz, M.D.,
Heritage College professor of endocrinology, J.O. Watson Diabetes
Research Chair and director of Ohio University Diabetes/Endocrine
Diseases Biorepository, have been investigating how the drug, C-10,
affects various autoimmune-inflammatory diseases.
Patients with type 2 diabetes have insulin resistance, meaning
that insulin produced by the pancreas does not work as effectively
as it should. When people eat, blood glucose (sugar) levels rise.
Under normal conditions, the pancreas produces insulin, which causes
glucose from the blood to be taken up into cells. Because cells do
not respond to insulin properly in patients with type 2 diabetes,
these individuals can’t maintain normal blood glucose levels.
Consequently, too much glucose builds up in the blood, which can
cause organ damage or lead to a heart attack or stroke, among other
Obesity is the main cause of type 2 diabetes. More than one-third
of U.S. adults are obese, putting them at high risk for developing
type 2 diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention, one out of three people will develop type 2 diabetes in
their lifetime, leading to additional health complications and
billions of dollars in medical costs and lost wages every year.
Early research indicates that type 2 diabetes could potentially be
slowed or stopped in patients who take C-10, which blocks a key
pathway that plays a role in the disease.
“The preclinical lab results showing C-10’s effects on type 2
diabetes are very promising,” said McCall, whose studies have been
supported through multiple grants, including a $2.6 million grant
from the National Institutes of Health.
C-10 is currently awaiting clinical trials.
“We are enormously proud of our many researchers, including Drs.
McCall and Schwartz. With determination and patience, they search
for solutions to the most prevalent health problems we face today,”
said Heritage College Executive Dean Kenneth H. Johnson, D.O. “As
we’ve seen repeatedly, discovery drives medicine, and it changes
lives for the better.”