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Curr Med Chem. 2018 Apr 9. doi: 10.2174/0929867325666180410094149. [Epub ahead of print]

Melatonin and oxidative stress in the diabetic state: clinical implications and potential therapeutic applications.

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Department of Physiology (Neuroimmunophysiology and Chrononutrition Research Group), Faculty of Science, University of Extremadura, Badajoz. Spain.


Circadian rhythms are ubiquitous in biological systems and control metabolic processes throughout the body. Misalignment of these circadian rhythms increases risk of developing metabolic diseases. Thus, disruption of the circadian system has been proven to affect onset of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). In this context, the pineal indoleamine melatonin is a signaling molecule able to entrain circadian rhythms. There is mounting evidence that suggests a link between disturbances in melatonin production and impaired insulin, glucose, lipid metabolism, and antioxidant capacity. Besides, several genetic association studies have causally associated various single nucleotide polymorphysms (SNPs) of human MT2 receptor with increased risk of developing T2DM. Taken together, these data suggest that endogenous as well as exogenous melatonin may influence diabetes and associated metabolic disturbances not only by regulating insulin secretion, but also by providing protection against reactive oxygen species (ROS), since pancreatic β-cells are very susceptible to oxidative stress due to their low antioxidant capacity.


circadian rhythm; insulin; melatonin; melatonin receptor; oxidative stress; type 1 and type 2 diabetes; β-cell

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