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© 2019 Bentham Science Publishers. Background and Objective: Obesity is an important contributor to the risk of both asthma and Type 2 Diabetes (T2DM). However, it has been suggested that T2DM and asthma are also independently associated. The aim of this systematic review was to synthesize the evidence for an independent relationship between T2DM and asthma. Methods: MEDLINE and EMBASE were searched for studies reporting the relationship between asthma and T2DM in adults. Given a potential bidirectional relationship, articles relating to T2DM as a risk factor for asthma, and asthma as a risk factor for T2DM were examined separately. Results: Eight studies were identified for inclusion in the review (n=2,934,399 participants). Four studies examined incident diabetes in those with asthma. The pooled (random effects model) adjusted hazard ratio for incident T2DM in asthma was 1.37 (95%CI 1.12-1.69; p <0.001) after controlling for BMI. Four studies reported prevalence or incidence rates of asthma in people with T2DM; higher rates of asthma in those with T2DM were reported in all four studies. Meta-analysis of results was not possible due to methodological heterogeneity. The quality of included studies was good, but due to small numbers, publication bias cannot be excluded. Conclusion: The published literature suggests a bidirectional independent relationship between T2DM and asthma, although we cannot exclude publication bias.

Original publication




Journal article


Current Diabetes Reviews

Publication Date





118 - 126