November 9, 2012

Is your Genetic Hand showing Type 2 Diabetes?


The marvel of genetics may be on the cusp of identifying a gene that foretells Type 2 diabetes. The journal Cell Metabolism  has published the findings in a new study that shows SFRP4 could be an indicator for islet dysfunction in Type 2 diabetes.

Secreted frizzled-related protein 4 (SFRP4) is a protein that in humans is encoded by the SFRP4 gene. SFRP4 influences islets  and reduces glucose-induced insulin secretion.  The overabundance of SFRP4 can be  measured in people years before symptoms are detected for Type 2 diabetes.

People who have above-average levels of SFRP4 in the blood are five times more likely to develop diabetes in the next few years than those with below-average levels. Knowing ahead of time, before symptoms of diabetes begin to alarm patients of a potential diagnosis, people can proactively enact lifestyle changes to thwart a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis.

For as long as Type 2 diabetes has been researched, the Holy Grail of predicting islet inflammation has been a mystery. Now that researchers are able to connect the over expression of SFRP4 with islet inflammation years before a Type 2 diagnosis, the dots are forming a picture. Imagine a banner flying behind a plane reading: Fold! This is not your hand.

Very few people, if any, would volunteer to check their blood glucose levels several times a day. However, if you knew that blood glucose checks, medications, and the looming threat of diabetic complications could be in the cards – wouldn’t you want to know? A lifestyle change could deal you a new hand that helps you avoid the pitfalls of Type 2 diabetes.

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