An anonymous reader quotes a report from the BBC: Scientists say diabetes is five separate diseases, and treatment could be tailored to each form. Diabetes, or uncontrolled blood sugar levels, is normally split into type 1 and type 2. But researchers in Sweden and Finland think the more complicated picture they have uncovered will usher in an era of personalized medicine for diabetes. The study, by Lund University Diabetes Centre in Sweden and the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland, looked at 14,775 patients including a detailed analysis of their blood. The results, published in The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, showed the patients could be separated into five distinct clusters:
Cluster 1 – severe autoimmune diabetes is broadly the same as the classical type 1 — it hit people when they were young, seemingly healthy and an immune disease left them unable to produce insulin
Cluster 2 – severe insulin-deficient diabetes patients initially looked very similar to those in cluster 1 — they were young, had a healthy weight and struggled to make insulin, but the immune system was not at fault
Cluster 3 – severe insulin-resistant diabetes patients were generally overweight and making insulin but their body was no longer responding to it
Cluster 4 – mild obesity-related diabetes was mainly seen in people who were very overweight but metabolically much closer to normal than those in cluster 3
Cluster 5 – mild age-related diabetes patients developed symptoms when they were significantly older than in other groups and their disease tended to be milder
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