According to researchers at the University of Colorado, a drug used to treat high blood pressure may also be used as a preventive medication for type 1 diabetes. This study was published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. This seems to be an important breakthrough to combat type 1 diabetes. In the clinical investigating laboratory, this discovery was path-breaking on mice and humans with the aid of supercomputers.
In pregnant woman and children, the drug methyldopa was used to treat high blood pressure for the past 50 years. This drug was included in the list of essential drugs at the World Health Organization (WHO).
Many drugs may be used to treat a single condition; however, the path-breaking discovery was completely unrelated to current use of medication. The risk of developing type 1 diabetes increases manifold with the molecule D8, with about 60 percent people with type 1 diabetes being diagnosed with this molecule. Scientists believe that the onset of heart disease could be prevented if the molecule D8 can be blocked specifically.
Every allopathic medication has side-effects. Excessive consumption of acetaminophen can cause damage to liver. Every small molecule approved by FDA was taken into consideration and analyzed with a supercomputer to identify whether the linkage between HLA and DQ8 existed. Each drug exhibited more than thousand orientations. We identified the ones that were associated with DQ8 molecule.
Thousands of drugs were analyzed with a supercomputer. The drug methyldopa was found to block DQ8. Nevertheless, the immune function of remaining cells was not compromised in this case like the way other immunosuppressant drugs. These research studies were conducted over a period of 10 years, but the efficacy was proved in mice and in 20 patients who were diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
These patients participated in the clinical trial that was conducted at the School of Medicine, University of Colorado. With this discovery, prediction of type 1 diabetes is possible. The ultimate aim of this study was either to delay or to prevent the onset of type 1 diabetes among the people who were at risk of developing diabetes.
The drug used to prevent type 1 diabetes can be administered orally, at least three times a day. The strategy of blocking the expression of a specific molecule can also be used to combat other diseases.This study showed significant improvement in people suffering from diabetes and other autoimmune diseases.
The same approach can also be used to treat other autoimmune disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus, etc. To verify the implications of this disease, a larger clinical trial would be conducted at the National Institutes of Health in spring season. A very significant development would be the prevention of type 1 diabetes in people at risk of developing the illness.