Type 2 diabetes is becoming more common around the world and not all patients can be successfully treated with existing drugs. Axelson et al. analyzed the gene expression pattern associated with type 2 diabetes and compared it to the gene signatures for thousands of drug candidates to find compounds that could counteract the effects of diabetes. The leading candidate from this analysis was sulforaphane, a natural compound found in broccoli and other vegetables.
The authors showed that sulforaphane inhibits glucose production in cultured cells and improves glucose tolerance in rodents on a high-fat or high-fructose diet. Additionally, in a clinical study, broccoli sprout extract containing sulforaphane was well tolerated and improved fasting glucose levels in obese and dysregulated type 2 diabetic human patients.
- Sulforaphane reduces hepatic glucose production and improves glucose control in patients with type 2 diabetes