Vietnamese scientist finds anti-diabetes compounds in white rice

Friday, 2019-02-01 13:14:13
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Associate Professor Tran Dang Xuan with experiments on rice genes. (Photo: Hiroshima University)
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NDO – Research by Associate Professor Tran Dang Xuan, who is working at Hiroshima University (Japan), has discovered and successfully isolated two precious compounds of momilactones A and B, which inhibit enzymes in white rice.

This announcement was published by the MDPI International Journal of Molecular Sciences in Switzerland on January 29.

This is the first study to confirm the presence of momilactones A and B (MA and MB) in refined rice seeds, and the first to find anti-diabetic compounds in white rice. Some studies have previously found rice to have compounds that inhibit diabetes, but only in brown or red rice, which are often of poor quality and difficult to consume.

MA and MB compounds are very rare in the world market and have not been fully studied for biological and pharmacological activities. The compound was sold at US$125 per 0.1 mg on, a company that sells famous British biochemical products.

Xuan said that there are four genes involved in the synthesis of Momilactones A and B in rice. This will help in creating new rice varieties that can inhibit diabetes, helping to increase the value of Vietnamese rice.

The discovery of Momilactones A and B suggests a new concept that eating a moderate amount of rice every day contributes to human health by reducing the risk of diabetes, gout and obesity. Several recent reports indicate that there are more than 3 million people in Vietnam suffering from or facing diabetes risks, so the results of this study are particularly significant.

After only one month of appraisal and criticism the work was published in the MDPI International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ranking No. 1 – at Q1 – on's ratings). MDPI is a member of the Publication Ethics Committee (COPE), which is evaluated by researchers as having a strict policy of ensuring the high quality of published scientific works.