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Why Is Diabetes Genetic?

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Type 1 Diabetes Risk Factors

There are several risk factors that may make it more likely that you’ll develop type 1 diabetes—if you have the genetic marker that makes you susceptible to diabetes. That genetic marker is located on chromosome 6, and it’s an HLA (human leukocyte antigen) complex. Several HLA complexes have been connected to type 1 diabetes, and if you have one or more of those, you may develop type 1. (However, having the necessary HLA complex is not a guarantee that you will develop diabetes; in fact, less than 10% of people with the “right” complex(es) actually develop type 1.) Other risk factors for type 1 diabetes include: Viral infections: Researchers have found that certain viruses may trigger the development of type 1 diabetes by causing the immune system to turn against the body—instead of helping it fight infection and sickness. Viruses that are believed to trigger type 1 include: German measles, coxsackie, and mumps. Race/ethnicity: Certain ethnicities have a higher rate of type 1 diabetes. In the United States, Caucasians seem to be more susceptible to type 1 than African-Americans and Hispanic-Americans. Chinese people have a lower risk of developing type 1, as do people i Continue reading >>

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Popular Questions

  1. pauls1958

    Diabetes - disease or condition?

    Does anyone on the forum have an opinion on this?
    Simplistically, I believe it's a condition because you can't "catch" it. Diseases are normally caught. that's not to say that disease can't lead to diabetes though.

  2. karena

    Qreat question! I wonder if it depends on the type? Disease is not necessarily 'caught' and while it most certainly can come from an infection, it can also result from a genetic defect. I'm looking forward to the coming opinons!

  3. JEC

    I say its both.

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