Thursday, March 31, 2011

Diabetic Complication Protection

Researchers have reported that some people with Type 1 Diabetes seem to avoid complications from Diabetes such as eye, kidney and heart disease, as they seem to have an inherent protection against them. The study published in the April issue of Diabetes Care confirmed that while it has been well known that control of blood sugar in Diabetics is an important factor in avoiding the complications of Diabetes such as Diabetic Retinopathy there seems to be a group of people who avoided serious diabetic related disease to a much greater extent.

In a group of people who'd had Type 1 Diabetes for more than 50 years, nearly 43 percent remained free of serious eye disease, while about 87 percent never developed kidney disease, nearly 40 percent were free of nerve damage and more than 50 percent were free of cardiovascular disease, according to the study. Overall about 35 percent did not develop and serious problems related to their Diabetes.

The exact protective mechanism is not yet understood and it may be somewhat different for microvascular complications such as Diabetic Retinopathy as compared to macrovascular complications such as heart disease. One potential thought is that “protective mechanism’ is related to the combination of substances called advanced glycation end products (AGEs), which the study found were 7.2 times more common in people with complications. AGEs develop in the body after long-term exposure to high blood sugar levels.

This particular combination of AGEs (high plasma carboxyethyl-lysine and pentosidine) was linked to complications, but other AGE molecules appeared to have a protective effect -- an exciting finding the researchers said may lead to new biomarkers for protection against complications of Diabetes.

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