(ANSA) – ROME, NOVEMBER 05 – There is not just one type 2 diabetes, but at least five variants with specific genetic characteristics and different modes of onset and course of the disease. This is according to a study coordinated by Lund University in Malmö in Sweden published in Nature Genetics.
By comparing the clinical and genetic data of about 8,000 patients, the researchers found that 6% of the sample had a form of diabetes characterized by juvenile onset, poor insulin secretion, low body mass index and an autoimmune component; this form was termed SAID, severe autoimmune diabetes. Very similar to this, but without autoimmune components, severe insulin deficiency diabetes (SIDD) was found: it was found in 18% of patients and has a high risk of eye and kidney complications. The third variant was called severe insulin-resistant diabetes (SIRD): it affected 15% of the sample and is characterized by late onset, obesity, insulin resistance and a high risk of nephropathy and hepatic steatosis. There are two less severe forms: moderate obesity-related diabetes or MOD (22%), which has early onset and is linked to obesity, and moderate age-related diabetes (MAD). The latter is the most common form (39% of patients), arises in old age and is easily manageable.
Genetic analysis led to the discovery that the different types of diabetes have, at least in part, different onset mechanisms: the cause of SIRD, for example, is to be found more in liver abnormalities than in the pancreas.
“The classification of the disease into subtypes with different risk profiles and etiologies at the time of diagnosis could allow a treatment tailored to address, in each patient, the main problems”, write the authors.
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