Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Protein reveals diabetes risk many years in advance

Date:
November 7, 2012
Source:
Lund University
Summary:
When a patient is diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, the disease has usually already progressed over several years and damage to areas such as blood vessels and eyes has already taken place. To find a test that indicates who is at risk at an early stage would be valuable, as it would enable preventive treatment to be put in place.

When a patient is diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, the disease has usually already progressed over several years and damage to areas such as blood vessels and eyes has already taken place. To find a test that indicates who is at risk at an early stage would be valuable, as it would enable preventive treatment to be put in place.

Researchers at Lund University have now identified a promising candidate for a test of this kind. The findings have been published in the journal Cell Metabolism.

"We have shown that individuals who have above-average levels of a protein called SFRP4 in the blood are five times more likely to develop diabetes in the next few years than those with below-average levels," says Anders Rosengren, a researcher at the Lund University Diabetes Centre (LUDC), who has led the work on the risk marker.

Higher levels in diabetes patients

It is the first time a link has been established between the protein SFRP4, which plays a role in inflammatory processes in the body, and the risk of type 2 diabetes.

Studies at LUDC, in which donated insulin-producing beta cells from diabetic individuals and non-diabetic individuals have been compared, show that cells from diabetics have significantly higher levels of the protein.

Link between inflammation and diabetes explained

It is also the first time the link between inflammation in beta cells and diabetes has been demonstrated.

"The theory has been that low-grade chronic inflammation weakens the beta cells so that they are no longer able to secrete sufficient insulin. There are no doubt multiple reasons for the weakness, but the SFRP4 protein is one of them," says Taman Mahdi, main author of the study and one of the researchers in Anders Rosengren's group.

Fivefold risk increase

The level of the protein SFRP4 in the blood of non-diabetics was measured three times at intervals of three years. Thirty-seven per cent of those who had higher than average levels developed diabetes during the period of the study. Among those with a lower than average level, only nine per cent developed the condition.

"This makes it a strong risk marker that is present several years before diagnosis. We have also identified the mechanism for how SFRP4 impairs the secretion of insulin. The marker therefore reflects not only an increased risk, but also an ongoing disease process," says Anders Rosengren.

The marker works independently of other known risk factors for type 2 diabetes, for example obesity and age.

Motivation for lifestyle changes

"If we can point to an increased risk of diabetes in a middle-aged individual of normal weight using a simple blood test, up to ten years before the disease develops, this could provide strong motivation to them to improve their lifestyle to reduce the risk," says Anders Rosengren, adding:

"In the long term, our findings could also lead to new methods of treating type 2 diabetes by developing ways of blocking the protein SFRP4 in the insulin-producing beta cells and reducing inflammation, thereby protecting the cells."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Lund University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. George A. Lozano, Vincent Lariviθre, Yves Gingras. The weakening relationship between the impact factor and papers' citations in the digital age. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 2012; 63 (11): 2140 DOI: 10.1002/asi.22731

Cite This Page:

Lund University. "Protein reveals diabetes risk many years in advance." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107073038.htm>.
Lund University. (2012, November 7). Protein reveals diabetes risk many years in advance. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107073038.htm
Lund University. "Protein reveals diabetes risk many years in advance." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121107073038.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Microneedle Patch Promises Painless Pricks

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 18, 2014) — Researchers at The National University of Singapore have invented a new microneedle patch that could offer a faster and less painful delivery of drugs such as insulin and painkillers. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

Raw: Nurse Nina Pham Arrives in Maryland

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) — The first nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola at a Dallas hospital walked down the stairs of an executive jet into an ambulance at an airport in Frederick, Maryland, on Thursday. Pham will be treated at the National Institutes of Health. (Oct. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

Raw: Cruise Ship Returns to US Over Ebola Fears

AP (Oct. 17, 2014) — A Caribbean cruise ship carrying a Dallas health care worker who is being monitored for signs of the Ebola virus is heading back to Texas, US, after being refused permission to dock in Cozumel, Mexico. (Oct. 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

Spanish Govt: Four Suspected Ebola Cases in Spain Test Negative

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) — All four suspected Ebola cases admitted to hospitals in Spain on Thursday have tested negative for the deadly virus in a first round of tests, the government said Friday. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins