Estrogen Treatment Helps To Prevent Type 2 Diabetes

In a study of postmenopausal mice and human cells, researchers found that estrogen targets specific cells in the pancreas and the gut to increase tolerance to glucose, which is associated with a lower risk for type 2 diabetes.

Lead researcher Jacques Philippe, who is a diabetes specialist currently working at the University of Geneva’s Faculty of Medicine in Switzerland, and colleagues recently reported their results in the journal JCI Insight.

Previous research has suggested that after menopause, women may face a greater risk of type 2 diabetes. This has been attributed to hormonal changes, such as a reduction in estrogen levels. Following up from such studies, scientists have investigated whether or not estrogen replacement therapy could help to prevent type 2 diabetes among postmenopausal women, and many studies have produced positive results.

That being said, the exact mechanisms by which estrogen may protect against type 2 diabetes have been unclear — until now. While prior studies have focused on how estrogen affects the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas, this latest study also looked at how the hormone impacts cells that produce glucagon.

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