Sci. Aging Knowl. Environ., 8 February 2006
Vol. 2006, Issue 5, p. nf5
[DOI: 10.1126/sageke.2006.5.nf5]


The Sour Side of Sweet

Sugar derivatives take a toll on cells

Mitch Leslie

Abstract: Sugars tantalize our taste buds and fuel our cells, but we pay a price for relying on the sweet, energy-rich molecules. Glucose and its breakdown products--especially one called methylglyoxal--can gum up vital cellular components. In the last 10 to 15 years, methylglyoxal and its chemical cousins have grabbed the attention of experts studying diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. One new paper suggests that methylglyoxal undermines health in an unexpected way: by altering the activity of a gene that controls blood vessel growth, possibly triggering one complication of diabetes. Scientists suspect that methylglyoxal disrupts the activity of other genes as well.

Citation: M. Leslie, The Sour Side of Sweet. Sci. Aging Knowl. Environ. 2006 (5), nf5 (2006).

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Science of Aging Knowledge Environment. ISSN 1539-6150