In response to the diabetes, the proteins in the heart cells had been modified to limit the kind of fuel it could accept. But if those changes could be reversed, it would allow the cells to continue using more kinds of fuel and improve energy production.
“Getting them closer to a prediabetic condition could save lives,” Humphries said.
The next step is to find exactly which proteins in the heart cells are being modified and to understand what conditions might allow modifications to be reversed.
Funding for the research was provided by the National Center for Research Resources, a part of the National Institutes of Health.
Greg Elwell is a public affairs specialist with Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation.