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Top minds brought together to fight diabetes

University researchers are working with a heart charity in a bid to detect diabetes early and help with the treatment of the disease.

The team at the University of Leeds has been awarded a grant of £114,992 by Leeds-based national charity Heart Research UK for their research into the diagnosis of diabetes.

The research, which could offer hope to millions of people, will focus on detecting changes in blood vessels through the ‘biomarkers’ created by the release of protein that can lead to diabetes. Experts say that the new technique will enable them to spot diabetes at an earlier stage than before.

According Diabetes UK, the number of people diagnosed with the disease has increased from 1.4 million to 3.7 million people since 1996. This figure is expected to reach a staggering 5 million people by 2025, making research like this so important.

The team hopes that the project will enable them to help produce treatments to prevent progression to type-2 diabetes, as well as those with fully-established diabetes at risk of heart attacks, strokes or limb loss.

Barbara Harpham, Chief Executive of Heart Research UK said:

Diabetes damages the blood vessels, and makes people two to three times more likely to develop cardiovascular disease.

The dedication we see from UK researchers is both encouraging and impressive and we at Heart Research UK are proud to support it and be part of it.

Dr Andrew Smith, who is leading the project at the University of Leeds, said:

It’s an exciting project and we’re very grateful to Heart Research UK for providing the funding.

The project at the University of Leeds is part of a series of awards by Heart Research UK totalling £1 million aimed at improving patient care and treatments.


Image by the University of Leeds