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Mechanism That Leads to Diabetes, Blindness, Identified, Washington University School of Medicine Study



9/18/2012 7:42:56 AM

The rare disorder Wolfram syndrome is caused by mutations in a single gene, but its effects on the body are far reaching. The disease leads to diabetes, hearing and vision loss, nerve cell damage that causes motor difficulties, and early death. Now, researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston and the Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research report that they have identified a mechanism related to mutations in the WFS1 gene that affects insulin-secreting beta cells. The finding will aid in the understanding of Wolfram syndrome and also may be important in the treatment of milder forms of diabetes and other disorders.

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