International team opens a 'new frontier' in diabetes research

An international group of investigators led by a scientist at Cedars-Sinai has identified a genetic mutation that protects people from Type 2 diabetes. And they say it makes for a good target for drug developers.

To find the mutation, the team of researchers analyzed the genes of 81,000 people without diabetes and then compared that profile with the genes of 16,000 people who suffered from the disease. One particular gene mutation in GLP1R apparently cut down the risk of developing diabetes.

Mark Goodarzi, director of the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at Cedars-Sinai, noted that the mutation doesn't prevent obesity--a well known trigger for diabetes.

"We have a wonderful opportunity to personalize the treatment and prevention of this chronic disease," said Goodarzi in a statement. "Identification of genes that influence the risk of diabetes is going to open new frontiers in diabetes drug development."

The study was published in the journal Nature Communications.

"This newly identified mutation in such a large study group is a critical discovery in the field of diabetic research," said Richard Bergman, director of the Diabetes & Obesity Research Institute at Cedars-Sinai. "Now we need to better understand why and how this genetic mutation might protect people from developing diabetes."

- here's the release
- read the research article

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