The incidence of type II diabetes in humans on a global scale is spiralling out of control. Although obesity has been linked to type II diabetes, the exact causes and mechanisms are still poorly understood. It is also now believed that certain ethnic groups are more susceptible to diabetes, with the exact cause unknown. Apart from humans, diabetes has also infiltrated the animal kingdom, both domestic and wild. There even seems to be a similar trend to humans that specific breeds within a species may be more susceptible to diabetes.
By studying various species (including humans), we may increase our chances of finding effective treatments and preventative measures for type II diabetes through understanding the mechanisms bringing about this disease. In particular, our research is focussing on animals that naturally consume diets low in carbohydrate, but high in fat and protein (carnivores). This research will also zoom into the genetic aspects of the species, to elucidate to what extent to which genes (e.g. breed) may contribute to the susceptibility of diabetes in these animals. Ultimately, we hope that this research will extrapolate to humans so that it will benefit both.
The current research team comprises world renowned medical doctors, veterinarians, scientists and students from the Universities of Cape Town and Pretoria, as well as collaborators from Europe and the USA. It is our heart's desire to better understand these obeservations through sound research. However, research is expensive and academic funding is rapidly declining. We need your support in furthering our cause. Please also visit our website for more information on this specific topic and other research projects (www.myolab.co.za).