Type 2 diabetes patients have specific genetic risk factors increasing the risk of Alzheimer’s

diabetes2The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has published a new study in the Molecular Aspects of Medicine journal correlating type 2 diabetes with Alzheimer’s disease based on certain genetic factors. Prior studies have revealed a link between type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease but a specific metabolic pathway has not been detailed.

An estimated 45 million people suffer from Alzheimer’s disease globally and 312 million people are impacted by T2D worldwide, exerting an enormous public burden.

The researchers used a common genetic analysis tools, called genome wide association, (GWAS), to reveal where type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease share certain homologous, functional features and the impact of those factors on the metabolic and cellular response that contributes to the development of these diseases.

“We identified multiple genetic differences in terms of SNPs that are associated with higher susceptibility to develop type 2 diabetes as well as Alzheimer’s disease,” said Dr. Pasinetti, the study author. “Many of these SNPs are traced to genes whose anomalies are known to contribute to T2D and AD, suggesting that certain diabetic patients with these genetic differences are at high for developing Alzheimer’s. Our data highlights the need for further exploration of genetic susceptibility to Alzheimer’s disease in patients with T2D.”


“Shared genetic etiology underlying Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes,” by Ke Hao, Antonio Fabio Di Narzo, Lap Ho, Wei Luo, Shuyu Li, Rong Chen, Tongbin Li, Lauren Dubner, and Giulio Maria Pasinetti (DOI: 10.1016/j.mam.2015.06.006), published online in Molecular Aspects of Medicine by Elsevier.

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