The Molecular Mechanisms of Cuproptosis and Small-Molecule Drug Design in Diabetes Mellitus

Molecules. 2024 Jun 15;29(12):2852. doi: 10.3390/molecules29122852.


In the field of human health research, the homeostasis of copper (Cu) is receiving increased attention due to its connection to pathological conditions, including diabetes mellitus (DM). Recent studies have demonstrated that proteins associated with Cu homeostasis, such as ATOX1, FDX1, ATP7A, ATPB, SLC31A1, p53, and UPS, also contribute to DM. Cuproptosis, characterized by Cu homeostasis dysregulation and Cu overload, has been found to cause the oligomerization of lipoylated proteins in mitochondria, loss of iron-sulfur protein, depletion of glutathione, production of reactive oxygen species, and cell death. Further research into how cuproptosis affects DM is essential to uncover its mechanism of action and identify effective interventions. In this article, we review the molecular mechanism of Cu homeostasis and the role of cuproptosis in the pathogenesis of DM. The study of small-molecule drugs that affect these proteins offers the possibility of moving from symptomatic treatment to treating the underlying causes of DM.

PMID:38930917 | DOI:10.3390/molecules29122852