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Two Common Polymorphisms Linked to Diabetes

Genotype boosts risk of progression in those with impaired glucose tolerance

WEDNESDAY, July 19 (HealthDay News) -- Two common polymorphisms in the transcription factor 7-like 2 (TCF7L2) gene are associated with an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a report in the July 20 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Jose Florez, M.D., Ph.D., of George Washington University in Rockville, Md., and colleagues genotyped 3,548 patients with impaired glucose tolerance who participated in a diabetes prevention trial between 1996 and 2001. In the trial, patients were randomized to lifestyle changes or treatment with metformin or placebo.

Over an average of three years, patients with the high-risk TT version of the rs7903146 polymorphism were more likely to develop diabetes (hazard ratio, 1.55) than those with a CC genotype. Patients with the TT genotype who were in the placebo group were more likely to progress (1.81) than those in the metformin (1.62) or lifestyle-intervention groups (1.15). Similar results were seen for the rs12255372 polymorphism.

"Further understanding of the mechanisms by which variation in this gene affects glucose homeostasis may provide new insights into the molecular basis of diabetes and opportunities for more targeted interventions for prevention and therapy," the authors conclude.

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