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Vanita Srivastava, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, November 13, 2012
It is not just your eating habits and lifestyle that makes you vulnerable to Type 2 diabetes. A new study has established a neural connection to the disease, while unfolding a new dimension for early detection of the disease. The study done by the Indian Diabetes Consortium (INDICO) led by CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), with AIIMS as a clinical partner, found that variations in gene TMEM163 could probably lead to defective insulin secretion.

This research - the first of its kind in India - shows a 'neural angle' to diabetes and has immense potential in understanding new mechanisms that lead to diabetes. It also places India in the list of countries with the right technology and human resources to perform complex genomic experiments at par with leading researchers in the world.

The study authored by 37 researchers will be published in a flagship journal of American Diabetes Association - 'Diabetes'.

"Type 2 diabetes (T2D) has developed into a major health problem, responsible for early morbidities and mortalities.  India with typical risk phenotypes and rapid socio economic transitions, provides an important resource for understanding the pathogenesis of T2D," said Dr Dwaipayan Bharadwaj, one of the lead authors of the study and principal scientist CSIR-IGIB.

The research has been able to identify a new locus to be associated with type 2 diabetes.