Researchers Identify Biomarker for Diabetes Risk in People with Obesity

January 17, 2018 | By Nicholas Weiler

UC San Francisco researchers have discovered a new biological pathway in fat cells that could explain why some people with obesity are at high risk for metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes. The new findings – demonstrated initially in mice and supported by data from human patients – could lead to new biomarkers to predict who is at risk and guide treatments to reduce the medical burden of obesity.

More than one-third of adults in the U.S. are considered clinically obese, and the number of people with extreme obesity (BMI over 40) has doubled in the past two decades, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Obesity has been linked to many dangerous health conditions, including type 2 diabetes. However, recent research has revealed that only a minority of people with obesity are actually at higher risk of diabetes than the general population. 

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