A compendious database on anti-diabetic natural compounds focusing on mechanism of action


Diabetes is a major public health issue and its prevalence is increasing at an alarming rate globally. Diabetes is a cluster of various metabolic disorders characterized by high blood glucose level (hyperglycemia), either because insulin production is insufficient, or because the body's cells do not respond properly to insulin, or both. Diabetes caused due to the failure of insulin production by the pancreas is termed as Type I or Insulin dependent diabetes. On the other hand, diabetes initiated with insulin resistance due to improper cell response towards insulin is known as Type II or non-insulin dependent diabetes. There are a number of different types of anti-diabetic medications available all over the world, but unfortunately these medicines have some or the other side effects. Thus, researchers are looking for better medications with lesser side effects and natural compounds seem to be a better alternative option.

Significance behind the database:

According to International Diabetes Federation 2015, diabetes has affected at least 415 million people worldwide and the number is expected to reach 642 million by the year 2040 []. Further, limited efficacy and undesirable side effects of currently available anti-diabetic drugs have the worsened the situation. Thus, development of an effective alternative treatment strategy against this debilitating disease is urgently required. Due to complex patho-physiology and association with other factors, drug acting on a single specific target could not be considered as an effective strategy to treat diabetes. So, instead of using target specific drugs, multi-target drugs with lesser side effects could be considered as an alternative strategy for the better treatment of diabetes. Interestingly, natural compounds provide numerous options to modify the symptoms and progress of diabetes. It has been found that a single natural compound could act on multiple diabetes associated targets with minimum side effects. Even though immense literatures on natural compounds showing promising results against diabetes are available, there is a need of more systematic study to classify natural compounds according to their anti-diabetic mode of action. To the best of our knowledge, none of the currently available databases provide information regarding anti-diabetic natural compounds on the basis of their mechanism of action. Therefore, categorizing anti-diabetic natural compounds on the basis of their different mechanism of action at one platform could be helpful to the researchers working on the treatment of diabetes. In addition, this database would also provide information on toxicity risk and physicochemical properties of anti-diabetic natural compounds.