Professor Hiroshi Hayade of Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, Dr. Hiromi Yoshida of Kagawa University, and Ultizyme International Co., Ltd., a venture company from Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology, have succeeded in structural analysis of the enzyme that dehydrates glucose.This enzyme is also used for self-measurement of blood glucose level, and improvement will be accelerated so that more accurate blood glucose level can be measured in the future.

 The number of diabetic patients, known as one of the lifestyle-related diseases in Japan, is approaching 4 million, which is a big problem in the world.It is essential for patients to control their blood glucose levels by taking medicine, eating, and exercising while measuring their blood glucose levels on a daily basis.Until now, various enzymes have been used to measure blood glucose levels, but now mold-derived glucose-degrading enzymes are used.On the other hand, there is still room for improvement, such as lack of accuracy because it detects sugars other than glucose.Nevertheless, there has been no knowledge of the details of its structure so far, and its elucidation has been awaited from all over the world.

 In order to know the structure of proteins such as enzymes, it is indispensable to make protein crystals.The research group made crystals from an enzyme made by genetically modified E. coli.Furthermore, we succeeded in clarifying the three-dimensional structure and the mechanism of the reaction that decomposes glucose from measurements using X-rays.Since the structure of the part that discriminates sugar has also been clarified, it will be possible to improve it at the genetic level so that only glucose can be detected.

 Furthermore, it is thought that the results of this research will not only lead to improvements in blood glucose measurement methods for diabetes, but will also be applied to a wide range of biological analyzes.Advances in technology for measuring substances in the body, which are indicators of these diseases, will enable people to lead a more comfortable life even if they have a chronic disease.

Source:[Tokyo University of Agriculture and Technology] Aiming to develop new biosensing technology

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