Compound Found in Purple Corn May Aid in Developing Future Treatments for Type 2 Diabetes, Kidney Disease
Diabetic nephropathy is one of the most serious complications related to diabetes, often leading to end-stage kidney disease. Purple corn grown in Peru and Chile is a relative of blue corn, which is readily available in the U.S. The maize is rich in anthocyanins (also known as flavonoids), which are reported to have anti-diabetic properties.
Scientists from the Department of Food and Nutrition and Department of Biochemistry at Hallym University in Korea investigated the cellular and molecular activity of purple corn anthocyanins (PCA) to determine whether and how it affects the development of diabetic nephropathy (DN). Their findings suggest that PCA inhibits multiple pathways involved in the development of DN, which may help in developing therapies aimed at type 2 diabetes and kidney disease.
The study is entitled “Purple corn anthocyanins inhibit diabetes-associated glomerular monocyte activation and macrophage infiltration.” It appears in the online edition of the American Journal of Physiology — Renal Physiology, published by the American Physiological Society.