People in India now have access to NutraGene's Type II diabetes genetic test, which aims to provide physicians an effective tool in assessing the risk of diabetes in the country and to help implement personalised prevention and management strategies.
India faces a potential diabetes epidemic with the number of diabetics expected to increase from 61.3 million in 2011 to 101 million by 2030. Pre-diabetes, a state when an individual's blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be Type II diabetes, is also widespread in India. Studies estimate that nearly 14 to 22 per cent of the Indian population falls in the pre-diabetic condition, suggesting that pre-diabetes is more prominent in the Indian population than Type II diabetes.
One of the sequence variants detected by NutraGene's Type II diabetes genetic test is a single nucleotide polymorphism (a single base variation in the sequence of the DNA) in the TCF7L2 gene on chromosome 10. Published gene-disease association studies conducted on thousands of people from the Indian population and over 40 others from across the world have tested the TCF7L2 genetic marker as one of the most significant genetic risk factors yet known for Type II diabetes. Studies show that between 8 and 11 per cent of the general population have been shown to carry two copies of the risk variants, but Type II diabetics are roughly twice that number. Having two copies of the TCF7L2 variant has been shown to approximately double the likelihood of Type II diabetes.