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Using Uric Acid (SUA) Levels to Determine Risk for Type 2 Diabetes

In this recent study, researchers in Ibaraki, Japan conducted a study, “To systematically evaluate the association between serum uric acid (SUA) level and subsequent development of Type 2 diabetes.”

Medline was searched March from 1966 to 2009 and Embase March from 1980 to 2009 for observational cohort studies examining the association between SUA and the risk of Type 2 diabetes by manual literature search.

“Relative risks (RRs) for each 1 mg/dl increase in SUA were pooled by using a random-effects model. The studies included were stratified into subgroups representing different study characteristics, and meta-regression analyses were performed to investigate the effect of these characteristics on the association between SUA level and Type 2 diabetes risk.

The search yielded 11 cohort studies (42,834 participants) that reported 3,305 incident cases of Type 2 diabetes during follow-up periods ranging from 2.0 to 13.5 years. The pooled RR of a 1 mg/dl increase in SUA was 1.17 (95% CI 1.09-1.25). Results were consistently significant (i.e., <1) across characteristics of participants and study design.

Publication bias was both visually and statistically suggested (P = 0.03 for Egger’s test, 0.06). Adjustment for publication bias attenuated the pooled RR per mg/dI increase in SUA (RR 1.11 [95% CI 1.03-1.20]), but the association remained statistically significant (P = 0.009).

“The current meta-analysis suggests that SUA level is positively associated with the development of Type 2 diabetes regardless of various study characteristics,” wrote S. Kodama and colleagues, University of Tsukuba, Medical Department.

Diabetes Care October 2009 vol. 32 no. 10 e125