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Genetic Scores vs. Clinical Risk ...

Posted Nov 23 2008 10:28am

Genetic Scores vs. Clinical Risk Factors in Predicting Type 2 Diabetes Risk

23 nov 2008--Knowledge of a patient's genetic-risk score for type 2 diabetes adds only slightly — albeit significantly — to the ability to predict their diabetes risk on the basis of clinical information alone, according to two studies in the  New England Journal of Medicine.

The first, a study of some 2400 subjects of European ancestry followed for nearly 30 years, examined genotype scores (a measure of the presence of risk-associated alleles) among those who developed diabetes by midlife and those who didn't. The researchers found that, although the genotype scores correlated significantly with risk, the genotypic information provided only a roughly 2% (nonsignificant) better discernment of risk.

Similarly, the second study, done in Sweden and Finland, found a slightly higher, but statistically significant, predictive value when genetic scores were added to clinical information like BMI and family history.

Identifying clinical risk factors "remains the cornerstone" in predicting diabetes risk, the authors of the first study conclude.


NEJM article 1  (Free abstract; full text requires subscription)

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