Beta Cell Failure and Diabetes Mellitus

Type 2 diabetes mellitus is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors that result in decreased insulin function at sites of insulin action and a reduced ability of pancreatic beta cells to elevate insulin secretion in response to increased blood glucose levels. The variant genes that cause susceptibility to diabetes were virtually unknown until the advent of genomewide association studies. In 2007, one such study identified associations between type 2 diabetes and six different chromosomal loci.1 The company deCODE Genetics subsequently confirmed these associations and identified an association with variant CDKAL1.2 Subsequent studies increased the number of implicated loci to about 40. Unfortunately, this plethora of loci has not yielded a proportionate improvement in our understanding of disease mechanisms, partly because genomewide association studies often implicate genes (or nongenic regions) of unknown function, such as CDKAL1.

 

See the link below for the full article:

 

http://nej.md/slDxk6

 

 

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