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Diabetes and Alzheimer’s

Type 2 diabetes is a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease. Although all the connections are not known, researchers have discovered a gene that increases both the risk for Type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer's disease. A study found a 27% rate of Alzheimer's disease for diabetic patients, compared to a 20% rate for nondiabetics (a 35% increased risk). Scientists recently presented results of a small pilot study showing that insulin delivered directly to the brain through a special inhaler seemed to slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease. It will be years before insulin or any other treatment can be clinically verified to slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease. Important actions needed to reduce the risk of Type 2 diabetes and all of its side effects, including heart trouble, amputations, kidney failure and blindness, are well known: exercise more and lose weight. It's possible that adding the threat of Alzheimer's disease to that list could end the reluctance of many people to make those lifestyle changes.
(Source: ScienceDaily, September 19, 2011)

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