A new program at the Diabetes Center at University of California at San Francisco will use mobile apps to enable patients with pre-diabetes to share de-identified data with UCSF researchers, and in turn receive coaching from nutritionists, dieticians and fitness trainers.

Matthias Hebrok
Matthias Hebrok

UCSF is partnering with Yes Health, which offers an all-mobile diabetes prevention program that includes the apps and coaches. More than one-third of Americans have pre-diabetes, and 90 percent of them don’t know it, according to the American Diabetes Association. Without intervention, about 70 percent of those with pre-diabetes will develop the full disease.

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While biological and genetic factors play a role in the development of Type 2 diabetes, behavioral and environmental factors also play a big part, according to the Diabetes Center.

“In addition to providing us with rich insights regarding how behavioral and environmental factors impact those with pre-diabetes, these data can be coupled with cellular, genetic and other biological data to create an unparalleled resource for scientific discovery,” said Matthias Hebrok, director of the Diabetes Center.

The center and Yes Health also will work to identify patients willing to participate in clinical trials to assess the relationship between behavioral and biological factors that lead to diabetes risk. The program is aligned with the Obama Administration’s Precision Medicine Initiative.

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