Journal Article

Type 2 diabetes mellitus: not quite exciting enough?

Frances Ashcroft and Patrik Rorsman

in Human Molecular Genetics

Volume 13, issue suppl_1, pages R21-R31
Published in print April 2004 | ISSN: 0964-6906
Published online January 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2083 | DOI:
Type 2 diabetes mellitus: not quite exciting enough?

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Type 2 diabetes mellitus is a serious metabolic disease that afflicts around 5% of the population in Western societies and over 150 million people worldwide. It is characterized by elevation of the blood glucose concentration, usually presents in middle age, and is exacerbated by obesity. Both genetic and environmental factors contribute to the disease but in the vast majority of cases the aetiology is still not understood. Here we present a novel hypothesis for the aetiology of type 2 diabetes. We postulate that the electrical activity of the insulin-secreting β-cells of the pancreas acts to integrate the genetic and environmental factors that predispose to disease risk. Our hypothesis is supported by a substantial amount of data gathered from a range of different disciplines and makes predictions that can be tested experimentally both in vitro and in man.

Journal Article.  10130 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Genetics and Genomics

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