Diabetes in adults has increased significantly worldwide, from 108 million cases in 1980 to 422 million in 2014, or 8.5% of the adult population, according to World Health Organization figures reported in April 2016.
New American research suggests that metabolic disease, particularly type 2 diabetes, could be linked to bacteria that penetrate the mucus lining of the colon.
The main risk factors for type 2 diabetes – being overweight, having high blood pressure or cholesterol, smoking and sedentary lifestyles – may not be the only causes at play in the development of the disease, say researchers.
The study focuses on gut microbiota – the billions of living organisms, such as bacteria viruses and fungus, found in the digestive tract – which is of increasing interest to the international scientific community due to its potential role in metabolic and mental conditions.
Previous studies suggest, for example, that obese people may have impaired or altered microbiota (dysbiosis) with a reduced presence of “good bacteria”.