Metabolic syndrome combines a variety of medical disorders including obesity, type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, and refractory hypertension, all of which increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. At this time, strategies that target the syndrome as a whole are not utilized to the extent with which patients receive individual disorder treatments, and are therefore less effective.
A research group led by Richard Johnson has identified the use of a specific variant of adenosine monophosphate deaminase 2 (AMPD2) as a target or switch for fat accumulation, insulin resistance, fatty liver, and persistent hypertension. Triggered by an interest in the role of uric acid in metabolic disease, Dr. Johnson has compiled data supporting the expectation that AMPD is a central regulator of lipid metabolism, lipid trafficking, and blood pressure regulation. Dr. Johnson’s group is now seeking an industry partner to support small molecule lead identification and optimization.
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