Research into why some diabetics do not get complications

Tue, 25 Jan 2011
A new study into diabetes is to focus on why some people who suffer from diabetes do not get any of the complications associated with the disease. With most research looking at why diabetics develop complications, it is hoped this study will help identify some of the unknown mechanisms that lead to diabetes, as well as point towards treatments for the damage to blood vessels that most diabetics suffer from.

Valeriya Lyssenko, co-leader of the PROLONG study in Sweden, said "The majority of diabetics will over time develop severe or fatal complications, but 10-15 per cent never do. They are the ones we are interested in in the PROLONG study."

It is known that, after a period of just a decade, 70 per cent of diabetes patients will experience some form of kidney damage that can progress to kidney failure, and many will also get health problems with their eyes .

The PROLONG research will begin with an initial examination of patients who have had diabetes for longer than 30 years, who will be compared with diabetics who have already some developed severe complications although they have only had diabetes for less than 15 years.

Patients will be questioned regarding their lifestyle and family history of disease, and will have blood samples taken. Lyssenko commented "If we can identify factors protecting these veterans from devastating complications, then it might be possible to develop drugs that can do the same thing."
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