Diabetes, a chronic metabolic non communicable disease (NCD), has attained epidemic proportions worldwide. As of mid-2023, 529 million adults have diabetes worldwide, and this number is estimated to increase to 1.3 billion by 2050. More than 95% of all adults with diabetes have type 2 diabetes (T2DM). India is one of the epicentres of the global diabetes epidemic and has the second highest number of people with the disease in the world with 101 million individuals as of 2021 and this number is set to increase markedly in the future.
The personal, social and economic costs of diabetes are huge and are likely to adversely affect India's economic development over the next couple of decades. Unless urgent steps are taken to thwart this burgeoning epidemic, more and more young and middle-aged Indians will fall prey to diabetes in the prime of their lives.
The first step to combating any epidemic is to gather all available information about it. Till recently, efforts to tackle the diabetes epidemic in India were hamstrung by the lack of quality original data emanating from the country itself. It was also evident to researchers in this field that the data obtained from Western populations could not be directly extrapolated to Indians, since the natural history of diabetes in Indians is quite different from other ethnic groups.
Recognizing the need for a world class research institute to conduct studies on diabetes and its complications in India, Dr. V. Mohan and Dr. M. Rema established the Madras Diabetes Research Foundation (MDRF) in 1996. From its humble beginnings in a small room, MDRF has gone from strength to strength and is now recognized worldwide as a premier research institute for diabetes and its complications.
Come join us for a journey through the world of diabetes research!