Epigenetic Study Reveals Novel Subgroups for Type 2 Diabetes

July 5, 2022 Natalie Crowley

Today over 400 million people around the globe are living with diabetes, the more significant majority of which have type 2. In all cases, the disease disrupts the body’s use of glucose, making it difficult for cells to take in needed sugar from the blood. Over time, high blood sugar levels can lead to problems with the kidneys, nerves, eyes, and feet, as well as comorbidities like heart disease and stroke. Diabetes is a chronic condition, meaning that people who [more…]

Epigenetic Marks Indicate Early Type 1 Diabetes Risk

March 29, 2022 Natalie Crowley

We hear a lot about the rise in type 2 diabetes worldwide, which primarily affects people in their 40s and 50s. But the same is also true for the less common type 1 diabetes (T1D). Global rates for this autoimmune disease have been increasing in recent years, and the trend is very troubling. T1D usually occurs in younger people and has a greater potential for causing disabilities and early death. No one knows exactly why this disease has risen significantly [more…]

Twin Study Reveals Epigenetic Factors for Type 2 Diabetes

December 21, 2021 Natalie Crowley

Epigenetic scientists have been keen on studying twins, particularly identical twins, as they are the perfect subjects to gain insight into the effects of the environment on the genome, especially when it comes to diseases. Because identical twins share the same DNA, any differences they have that are environmentally induced most likely show up in their epigenome. In a case where one identical twin has a disease, but the other does not, researchers can look at the twins’ environments for [more…]

Impaired Muscle Gene Expression Linked to Type 2 Diabetes

May 25, 2021 Natalie Crowley

Type-2 diabetes comes with a slew of health issues, but one complication that patients often endure is muscle weakness. Poor muscle function makes everyday tasks difficult and reduces activity, which in turn, makes the condition even worse. While exercise and diet can help maintain a patient’s mobility, more information is needed to address the underlying causes that lead to diabetic muscle damage. Scientists at Lund University in Sweden have looked into this matter and have found evidence that one particular [more…]

Early Detection of DNA Methylation in Pancreas Could Help Identify Diabetes

September 15, 2020 Tim Barry

Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is an extremely common chronic disease that affects the way the body uses insulin to regulate glucose levels. Specifically, the body either resists the effects of insulin, or it doesn’t produce enough of it to properly metabolize glucose. This could lead to nerve damage, heart and blood vessel complications, and other adverse health effects down the line. There are several factors that could lead to developing T2D, including obesity, lack of exercise, and poor diet. There [more…]

Could a New Epigenetic Blood Test Predict Your Risk of Type 2 Diabetes?

May 17, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Diabetes is a disease characterized by the body’s inability to properly use insulin and it affects over 29 million Americans. With new epigenetic research, however, the disease may be mitigated with a simple blood test that offers early knowledge and the possibility for pre-emptive lifestyle management. Lund University researchers in Sweden published their study in Nature Communications, in which they discovered a novel biomarker to predict a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes. By using a blood test to [more…]

Epigenetics: Feeding the Obesity and Diabetes Epidemic?

March 21, 2016 Bill Sullivan

Every kid reaching for the junk food has heard mom and dad’s warning, “You are what you eat!” But parents should be advised that children can now offer a humbling retort, “No, I’m what YOU ate!” A new study by scientists from the Institute of Experimental Genetics at Helmholtz Zentrum München (Neuherberg, Germany) suggests that the metabolic consequences of mom and dad’s dietary habits can be inherited by their kids via epigenetic mechanisms. So in addition to inheriting a genetic [more…]

Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus and Epigenetics

April 7, 2015 Mary Vagula

Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a polygenic metabolic disease characterized by elevated blood sugar levels due to pancreatic beta-cell functional impairment and insulin resistance in tissues such as skeletal muscle, adipose tissue and the liver (1). Millions of people around the globe are diagnosed with diabetes, and its incidence is estimated to double by 2030. It has become one of the most challenging public health issues of 21st century and the fifth leading cause of death worldwide (2). The [more…]

Racial Health Disparities Linked to Epigenetic Elements

February 15, 2022 Natalie Crowley

When it comes to health, race typically has an impact. Evidence compiled over several decades points out marked differences in morbidity and mortality rates across varying racial and ethnic minority groups. And while these disparities can arise from any number of environmental or social exposures, exactly how they detrimentally affect the human body and why they continue to impact certain minority groups is not entirely understood.  Most findings attribute minority health disparities to inequalities in education, socioeconomic status, access to [more…]

Using CRISPR/Cas9 to Epigenetically Activate or Deactivate Genes

December 7, 2021 Natalie Crowley

Since the discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 system, targeting DNA more precisely for genetic editing has become a lot easier. However, removing part of the genetic code may not be necessary in all cases, especially if there were a way to switch off a gene of interest instead. Thankfully, scientists have found that CRISPR/Cas9 can also be used to do just this – deactivate genes without altering the underlying DNA sequence. When we refer to a cell’s DNA, we’re actually talking [more…]

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