Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Harmful blood glucose levels linked to defective gene

02.05.2008
A genetic mutation that can raise the amount of glucose in a person's blood to harmful levels is identified today in a study in the journal Science.

High levels of blood glucose increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and early death, even in healthy people who do not have diabetes and whose blood glucose levels are at the higher end of the range considered 'normal' by doctors. One in five people in the UK has a high blood glucose level.

The study, by researchers from Imperial College London, the French National Research Institute and McGill University in Canada, reveals an association between high levels of blood glucose and a mutation in a gene known as G6PC2 or IGRP.

The research shows that the mutated IGRP gene blocks the action of a sensor called glucokinase. By stopping glucokinase from doing its job, the gene prevents the body from keeping tight control over its levels of blood glucose. Glucokinase works by signalling to cells known as beta cells which then secrete insulin to keep blood glucose levels under control.

... more about:
»Genetic »Glucose »IGRP »Mutation »blood

The researchers hope their findings could enable a therapy to be developed to stop the defective IGRP gene from blocking the glucokinase sensor. This would restore control of glucose levels in the blood and help prevent these levels from becoming too high.

The researchers believe that the mutation in the IGRP gene could cause an increase of around five percent in the level of glucose in the blood. This small percentage increase would be enough to raise a person's risk of health problems because levels of blood glucose are so tightly controlled.

Epidemiological studies have shown that 80 percent of the risk of cardiovascular disease is related to a blood glucose level just above the average. High blood glucose levels are linked to obesity, poor nutrition and lack of exercise.

Professor Philippe Froguel, leading author of the research from the French National Research Institute and the Department of Genomic Medicine at Imperial College London, said: "Having a high level of blood glucose is a bit like having high cholesterol or high blood pressure in that the higher the level, the greater your risk of serious health problems. Our study helps unravel the genetic reasons why some people have higher levels of glucose in their blood than others.

"At present, doctors advise people with high blood glucose levels to lose weight and exercise. We hope that ultimately our research will mean we can develop new treatments to stop people from developing high blood glucose levels, which would enable them to live longer and healthier lives," added Professor Froguel.

The scientists reached their conclusions after comparing the genetic makeup of 654 non diabetic people with differing levels of blood glucose, from the low to the high end of the 'normal' range. The researchers looked at mutations in the building blocks, called

nucleotides, which make up DNA.

There are mutations, known as single-nucleotide polymorphisms, in around one in every 600 nucleotides. The scientists examined over 392,000 of these mutations to find the ones specific to high blood glucose levels. The researchers confirmed their findings by analysing the genetic makeup of a further 8000 individuals with blood glucose levels within the non diabetic range, to verify that the same genetic mutations were visible in these individuals.

Today's study follows on from a study published in February 2007 by the same team, where they identified the most important genes associated with a risk of developing type-2 diabetes.

The research was funded by Genome Canada, Genome Quebec, the French National Agency for Research, the Medical Research Council and the National Academia of Finland.

Laura Gallagher | alfa
Further information:
http://www.imperial.ac.uk

Further reports about: Genetic Glucose IGRP Mutation blood

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Show me your leaves - Health check for urban trees
12.12.2017 | Gesellschaft für Ökologie e.V.

nachricht Liver Cancer: Lipid Synthesis Promotes Tumor Formation
12.12.2017 | Universität Basel

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

12.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Multi-year submarine-canyon study challenges textbook theories about turbidity currents

12.12.2017 | Earth Sciences

Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

12.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>