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Image 6 of Kentucky Alumnus, 1986, no. 3

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l i l l i l Urban Citizen Dissatisfaction Artificial Sweetener for BP The way local governments are struc- V ». produce another compound called an- l tured in metropolitan areas could make — `”tt—.; i _ giotensin II which can cause hyperten- ` a difference in the way citizens respond if ,_4_“ `——yVi` _ sion by constricting the blood vessels. to gripes they have about urban ,jL·.· The possible link was discovered dur- scrvices. , .» i ing routine research by Galardy and That’s the hypothesis that University .VV/ Damian Grobelny, a visiting research of Kentucky political science professor ___~ · ,_ · I professor from Poland. The two noticed i William Lyons and David Lowery, for- j ii &e ,_ \ that aspartame has a chemical structure li merly of UK and now at the University similar to other inhibitors of angioten- J of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, will ex- ’4 , I \ g sin converting enzyme. { plore in a new study being funded by a V `j Galardy says testing in humans l $44,998 National Science Foundation _ DSW££r;NlgE would be necessary before any definite grant. conclusions could be reached on Neighborhoods in Lexington and _ aspartame’s effect on blood pressure. A communities in the Louisville area are crucial question, says Galardy, is find- · to be surveyed to determine the ways ing how much of the enzyme inhibitor i citizens deal with aspects of community A UK scientist has found evidence that formed by aspartame reaches the blood- i life with which they are dissatisfied. the artificial sweetener aspartame could stream intact without being broken Lyons and Lowery also will examine help reduce high blood pressure. down into its component parts. ` the differences between citizen respons- Aspartame is marketed under the Also uncertain at this time is whether l es in the localities where citizen groups trade name NutraSweet and has gained aspartame could reduce blood pressure have their own governments (as in the recent popularity for use in soft drinks in all persons, or only those with hyper- independent communities of the Louis- and other consumer products. tension. ville area) or are part of a more wide- While stressing that his results are As an artificial sweetener, aspartame spread government (ie. Lexington). preliminary and do not reflect any stud- is about 200 times stronger than sugar. Lyons says responses to dissatisfac- ies in animals or humans, UK Professor Because it is composed of naturally-oc- , tion may include vocal or written pro- Richard Galardy says his in vitro exper- curring amino acids, Galardy considers l test, voting behavior, or leaving. Others iments indicate that aspartame inhibits it safe for human consumption. { may remain in the community by a chemical reaction in the body that Galardy is an associate professor in choice or perceived necessity. can cause hypertension, or high blood the UK College of Medicine, depart- l Five independent communities in the pressure. ment of biochemistry, and conducts Louisville metropolitan area will be sur- It is estimated that one out of four research at UK’s Sanders-Brown Re- veyed, each having a distinct socio-eco- adult Americans have some degree of search Center on Aging. l nomic makeup. Five neighborhoods in high blood pressure. Although there are Lexington, demographically mirroring several treatments available, there is no g the Louisville-area communities, will be permanent cure. l surveyed. Galardy says aspartame, when in- He pointed out that in terms of gov- gested, is metabolized in the stomach ' ermnental organization, the Louisville and forms an enzyme inhibitor I area with its fragmentation of local gov- (aspartylphenylalanine), which blocks li ernment is fairly typical of older north- the action of a naturally-occurring com- ll ern cities, while Lexington with a single pound called angiotesin converting consolidated government is more typi- enzyme. This enzyme normally helps cal of newer Southern cities. Results of the research arc expected l in 1987. I i I l i l 4 UK 4 l l