Carrying two copies of a common variant of a certain gene could double the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. It would put people in a similar risk category to being clinically obese. These are the findings of a new study led by UCL (University College London) researchers.
The study, partly funded by Diabetes UK and led by UCL Professor Steve Humphries, studied the TCF7L2 gene, which was found to be implicated in diabetes earlier this year by a group working in Iceland.
"The findings of this research are very exciting, as Type 2 diabetes results from a complex mix of genetic and lifestyle factors," said Dr Angela Wilson, Director of Research at Diabetes UK.
“If we can improve our understanding as to why people with certain genes are more likely to develop diabetes, it will help us to find ways to identify people at risk. We can then enable them to take preventative action by adopting a healthy diet, becoming active and ensuring they do not become overweight - which is a major risk factor for diabetes."
The results of the study have been published in the Journal of Molecular Medicine.