A cross-analysis study of more than 4 million people has established a clear link between people with psoriasis and diabetes.

The study, led by University of California researchers, was published online in Archives of Dermatology, and found a strong association between the dry skin rash and blood sugar disorder.

Psoriasis is a widespread skin condition that runs in families and often develops in childhood, while 12% of new cases of diabetes start in under 20s every year according to Department of Health estimates.

Earlier studies have hinted that psoriasis could be a risk factor for diabetes but the team from UC found that patients with mild psoriasis at age 10 were 1.5 times more likely to develop diabetes by age 22 then those without the disease.

All but one of the 27 studies analysed found a link between psoriasis and diabetes with data taken from outpatient clinics, insurance claims, and hospitals.

Study lead Dr April Armstrong explained the importance of the findings: "The large sample size and consistent association between psoriasis and diabetes make these study findings very strong and suggest an underlying physiological link between the two diseases," she said.

"There is evidence that fat cells in psoriasis patients may not function normally. These cells secrete inflammatory substances known as cytokines that increase insulin resistance in the liver and muscle and initiate destruction of insulin-producing cells in the pancreas."

Armstrong and her team next plan to study endothelial cells in order to interpret the unseen physiological basis of psoriasis and will soon create a network to share clinical data on patients with psoriasis in order to expand their research.

Read the full study athttp://bit.ly/P7iw7G(Archives of Dermatology)

Posted 19/10/2012 by richard.hook@pavpub.com