Radiation and Diabetes

In the beginning of the last section we stated that diabetes actually results from poisoning. Pancreatic beta cells are sensitive to reactive oxygen species (ROS) [8] and oxidative stress caused by radiation exposure. Radiation of course is another form of poison. 

Incidence of type 1 diabetes mellitus, a disorder involving the immune system, was observed within the residential population of Hiroshima among survivors of the atom bomb detonation. Studies have also shown that thymectomy and a sub-lethal dose of gamma radiation induces type 1 diabetes in rats. Mass screening for diabetes mellitus has been conducted on 64,000-113,000 atomic bomb survivors residing in Hiroshima City since 1961. From 1971 to 1992 a 2.7-fold increase in the prevalence of diabetes mellitus was observed in males and a 3.2-fold increase in females.

Researchers at the Pediatric Hospital A. Meyer, Florence, Italy studied children in Gomel, Belarus in the years subsequent to the Chernobyl disaster. The results of the study confirmed the hypothesis that environmental pollution such as that subsequent to the Chernobyl accident can cause diabetes.