Water soluble compounds extracted from C. cassia potentiate insulin activity, as measured by glucose oxidation in the rat epididymal fat cell assay. The most active compound, methylhydroxy chalcone polymer (MHCP), increased glucose metabolism approximately 20-fold and was an effective mimetic of insulin according to an in vitro study. When combined with insulin, the responses were greater than additive, indicating synergism between the two compounds (Jarvill-Taylor et al 2001). According to Anderson, MHCP is actually a water-soluble polyphenols type-A polymer that increases insulin sensitivity by activating the key enzymes that stimulate insulin receptors, while inhibiting the enzymes that deactivate them. More specifically, extracts of cinnamon activate insulin receptor kinase and inhibit dephosphorylation of the insulin receptor, leading to maximal phosphorylation of the insulin receptor.
The United States Agricultural Research Service has filed a patent application on the active substances.
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