Genetics opens the possibility of detecting and preventing diabetes

The Finnish scientist Jaakko Tuomilehto assured on World Diabetes Day that in the future it will be possible to “detect and prevent the disease” with the use of genetic information.

The researcher said that “you can not prevent type 1 diabetes at the moment”, contrary to type 2, which you can prevent with diet and exercise.

With genetic studies, it will “identify the person who has the risk of contracting it,” said the scientific director of the Dasman Diabetes Institute during his visit to Mexico.

“If someone in the family has type 1 diabetes, we can see which other members are prone to the disease,” the first cause of death in Mexico, and therefore the importance of “improving the tools to recognize susceptible genes,” he explained.

The expert indicated that the genetic information will help the “development of medicines” to treat the disease.

On gestational diabetes among Mexican women, said that “there are studies to diagnose important genetic factors” that occur in most of these women who have the risk of suffering from this disease, said the scientist.

On obesity, he indicated that genetic factors also intervene. There are more than 200 known genes related to weight gain, he said.

Tuomilehto explained that these genetic markers alone do not produce obesity, but make it more prone to the person.

On taxes on sugary drinks, said it is an important measure to reduce consumption, although the increase in cases diagnosed with diabetes pointed out that “should be reviewed if this action is actually working.”

The Finnish scientist is a principal investigator of the DIAMOND project of the World Health Organization and has conducted numerous studies on diabetes.

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