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NLRP3-mediated inflammation leads to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes

NLRP3 activation is associated with a pathologic inflammatory response in children with obesity and with insulin resistance increasing the risk of developing metabolic complications. Inflammation and oxidative stress, which are closely related pathophysiological processes, one of which can be easily induced by the other, are key drivers for developing metabolic complications, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, in this population.


In the paper, ‘Altered insulin secretion dynamics relate to oxidative stress and inflammasome activation in children with obesity and insulin resistance,’ published in the Journal of Translational Medicine, the authors conducted a case-controlled study of 132 children who were either lean or were living with obesity. The group with obesity was segmented into those with or without insulin resistance, and those with insulin resistance were segmented into those with an early and late insulin response to glucose as determined by an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT).


The researchers reported the following key findings in children with obesity, insulin resistance and increased risk of metabolic complications:

  • Higher levels of NLRP3 and its effector proteins (active IL-1β, caspase-1, and gasdermin D) in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and serum compared to the other groups studied, indicative of NLRP3 activation and an inflammatory response.

  • Higher levels of uric acid versus the other groups, a well-known trigger of NLRP3 activation.

  • Increased levels of oxidative stress and oxidative damage versus the other groups.


“It is insulin response to an OGTT that identifies children with obesity suffering oxidative stress, and inflammasome activation more specifically,” the authors concluded. “Uric acid could be mediating this pathological inflammatory response by activating NLRP3 in peripheral blood mononuclear cells.”


“Childhood obesity, which has increased more than 8-fold over the last 40 years, is an alarming health problem today due to the increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes, early heart disease, and other co-morbidities,” commented Stephen C Glover, ZyVersa’s Co-founder, Chairman, CEO and President. “The research published in the Journal of Translational Medicine points to a significant role for inflammasome-mediated inflammation and oxidative stress in development of metabolic complications in obese children. ZyVersa is developing Inflammasome ASC Inhibitor IC 100 designed to inhibit NLRP3 and other types of inflammasomes and their associated ASC specks to attenuate initiation and perpetuation of inflammation, which may have therapeutic potential to alleviate metabolic complications of childhood obesity with early intervention.”


IC 100 is a novel humanized IgG4 monoclonal antibody that inhibits the inflammasome adaptor protein ASC. IC 100 was designed to attenuate both initiation and perpetuation of the inflammatory response. It does so by binding to a specific region of the ASC component of multiple types of inflammasomes, including NLRP1, NLRP2, NLRP3, NLRC4, AIM2, Pyrin. Intracellularly, IC 100 binds to ASC monomers, inhibiting inflammasome formation, thereby blocking activation of IL-1β early in the inflammatory cascade. IC 100 also binds to ASC in ASC Specks, both intracellularly and extracellularly, further blocking activation of IL-1β and the perpetuation of the inflammatory response that is pathogenic in inflammatory diseases. Because active cytokines amplify adaptive immunity through various mechanisms, IC 100, by attenuating cytokine activation, also attenuates the adaptive immune response.


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