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British investigator John Vallance-Owen has suggested that the insulin antagonist associated with plasma albumen, called synalbumen, may serve as a genetic marker to study the inheritance of diabetes mellitus.
It has also been suggested that this antagonist, which appears to be the B chain of the insulin molecule, may even be casually related to diabetes.
To test these assumptions, a group of investigators at the Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada, investigated the prevalence of synalbumen in families with a history of diabetes and its effect, if any, on blood glucose and plasma insulin levels.
While their data are as yet insufficient to draw any firm genetic conclusions about synalbumen and diabetes, the insulin antagonist was found to be present in a large percentage of close relatives of diabetic persons and, where present, appeared to occur in each generation.
On the other hand, blood glucose and plasma insulin levels were
Synalbumen: A Genetic Indicator of Diabetes? JAMA. 1965;193(3):38–39. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03090030086050
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