The researchers from Aarhus University in Denmark identified substances in coffee that could help quash the risk of developing Type-2 diabetes.
The finding could spur the development of new drugs to treat or even prevent the disease.
Some studies has suggested that drinking three to four cups of coffee a day can reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, a disease that afflicts nearly 30 million Americans.
Initially, the scientists suspected that caffeine was responsible for this effect.
But later the findings discounted this possibility, suggesting that other substances in coffee may have a more important role.
They divided mice that are prone to develop Type-2 diabetes into three groups.
Two of the groups were fed differing doses of cafestol.
After 10 weeks, both sets of cafestol-fed mice had lower blood glucose levels and improved insulin secretory capacity compared to a control group, which was not given the compound.
Cafestol also did not result in hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, a possible side effect of some antidiabetic medications.
The researchers concluded that daily consumption of cafestol can delay the onset of Type-2 diabetes in these mice and that it is a good candidate for drug development to treat or prevent the disease in humans.
The research appears in ACS' Journal of Natural Products. (ANI)