Diabetes is a chronic and possibly incapacitating condition that is prevalent in the Philippines. There are two types of diabetes: type 1 and type 2. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune, childhood-onset disease wherein an individual does not produce insulin. It affects about 500,000 children 14 years and below and this number is said to be rising by 3% annually. Type 2 diabetes, on the other hand, is a metabolic disorder due to insulin resistance. This type of diabetes is said to affect 20.6% or one out of every five Filipinos who are 30 years old and above. Because of the continuous increase of the number of people afflicted with this condition, a lot of attention has been given to its prevention and cure.
Gene variations that signal disease sequences in diabetes are of special interest to the Diabetes Study Group. Specialists are working together to discover the link between genes and the environment that lead to diabetes and its complications. The group has looked at associations between genetic problems (mutations and polymorphisms) and diabetes among Filipinos.