Diabetes II: only in humans and dolphins? Large brain needs O2 & energy balance:
Model for human health
“While some people may eat a high protein diet to help control diabetes, dolphins appear to have developed a diabetes-like state to support a high protein diet,” veterinary epidemiologist Stephanie Venn-Watson, director of clinical research at the NMMF, told a meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in San Diego.
It’s the first time researchers have found a natural animal model for type II diabetes in humans.
This not only allows scientists to explore diabetes-like functions in an animal model, but studying their genome may help find a completely new treatment.
Large brain demand high blood glucose
“Shared large brains that have high blood glucose demands may explain why two completely different species - humans and dolphins - have developed similar physiological mechanisms to handle sugar,” she added.
There are also hints that humans and dolphins may share similar chronic conditions associated with diabetes, such as insulin resistance, haemochromatosis (or iron overload) and kidney stones.
Dolphins have harmless diabetic fast during sleep which pumps up blood glucose levels. Most animals get their glucose from eating carbs, but not dolphins. Brains need suhgar to function, but fish has none. 3 dolphins with abnormal insulin levels also had iron overload, a condition associated with diabetes in people. While humans and dolphins aren't closely related, both have big brains and blood cells that can move large amounts of glucose, so both may have a switch.
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