Targets for anti-diabetes drugs

In a new study, researchers from the University of Illinois in the US prepared extracts of marjoram (Origanum majorana), rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis), Mexican oregano (Lippia graveolens) and green oregano (Origanum vulgare).

They used two forms of each of these plants: one from greenhouse- grown plants and the other from commercially purchased dried forms. They tested the extracts against enzymes that are targets for anti-diabetes drugs.

One enzyme is DPP-4, which is targeted by drugs like metformin and sitagliptin. The other enzyme is PTP1B, which is involved in insulin signalling, but finding drugs that will inhibit it is proving difficult.

The greenhouse-grown rosemary, Mexican oregano and marjoram were the best inhibitors of DPP-4. However, extracts of the dried commercial herbs were the best inhibitors of PTP1B. You shouldn’t replace your medications with these herbs, but this shows that your food can work in the same way as your medicine.

Source: Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry
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