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New blood test helps predict diabetes earlier

A new blood test for identifying people at risk from diabetes has been developed. The test is able to predict which people are at risk of getting diabetes 10 years earlier than current tests. The research, which was published in the journal Circulation Research, found that the test, which works by detecting levels of a genetic molecule in the blood, can identify about half of the people who will develop type 2 diabetes later in life.
It is also hoped that the molecule, microRNA (MiR), will be able to detect people who are at a high risk of heart and artery disease . The MiR diabetes test can be used in conjunction with conventional methods, and may be able to distinguish those who develop some complications of diabetes caused by damage to blood vessels, including heart attack, stroke and poor circulation.
This could also be a quick and simple way to monitor blood vessel health, so that the damage that diabetes does to the blood vessels can be detected earlier, and early treatment such as cholesterol and blood pressure lowering drugs can target the problems.
Manuel Mayr, from King’s College London who is leading the study, said “It’s very important for doctors to define those diabetic patients that are at the highest risk of developing cardiovascular complications. We hope that this new class of blood markers may give additional insight that we’re currently not getting from other clinical tests .”

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