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Risk factors for type 2 diabetes mellitus: An exposure-wide umbrella review of meta-analyses

Risk factors for type 2 diabetes mellitus: An exposure-wide umbrella review of meta-analyses

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Author(s): Vanesa Bellou,Lazaros Belbasis,Ioanna Tzoulaki,Evangelos Evangelou
Summary / Abstract:

Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) ranks highly on the international health agenda as a global pandemic and as a threat to human health and global economies. The number of people with T2DM worldwide has more than doubled during the past 20 years. According to the International Diabetes Federation, 415 million people are living with T2DM in 2015, and by 2040 the number will be almost 642 million. These estimates correspond to a global prevalence of 8.8% (95% confidence interval, 7.2–11.4%) in 2015, and a projected global prevalence of 10.4% (95% confidence interval, 8.5–13.5%) in 2040. Epidemiological data predict an inexorable and unsustainable increase in global health expenditure attributable to T2DM, so disease prevention should be given high priority.

T2DM results from an interaction between genetic and environmental factors. Genes and the environment together are important determinants of insulin resistance and β-cell dysfunction. Because changes in the gene pool cannot account for the rapid increase in prevalence of T2DM in recent decades, environmental changes are essential to the understanding of the epidemic.

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