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Hormone Information Shows Promise in Diagnosing Feline Diabetes

MAF Successful Outcome:

Diabetes and insulin resistance are common in overweight cats. Obesity in cats is increasing, and as a result, more cats are developing diabetes. Obese cats have significantly lower levels of adiponectin than lean cats do, but their hormone levels increase as they lose weight. Adiponectin improves insulin sensitivity in humans and mice and could hold potential as a new treatment or early screening tool for type 2 diabetes mellitus in cats. Scientists from the University of Tennessee looked at changes in adiponectin levels and insulin action as cats lost and gained weight to determine whether changes in these levels predict the development of insulin resistance. This was the first study to measure the active, high-molecular-weight form of feline adiponectin, and the results are providing valuable information regarding the physiology of this hormone in cats. The hormone appears to act in a similar manner in cats and humans. The information gained from this project will allow researchers to study the various forms of feline adiponectin and may lead to better tools for diagnosing and treating cats with diabetes. In addition, this project helped train a young researcher who was able to complete her PhD and is now board certified by the American College of Veterinary Nutrition. She continues to study canine and feline obesity and treats clinical patients with nutritional needs as a clinical instructor at the University of Tennessee’s College of Veterinary Medicine. (D08FE-035)


Posted by MAFon January 20, 2010.

Categories: Animal health, Animal studies, Cat diseases, Cat health, Diabetes, Feline health, Obesity

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