The EASD Diabetes and Cancer Study Group (DCSG)

Members of the DCSG at 2016's annual meeting hosted in Reykjavik, Iceland

The DCRC group in 2015 hosted at the Health eResearch Centre in Manchester, UK.

Diabetes and Cancer

Diabetes and cancer are common chronic disorders. In Europe alone, there are 55.4 million individuals living with diabetes, mainly type 2 diabetes (T2D); while there are an estimated 3.5 million new cancer cases per year.

Estimates of the co-occurrence of prevalent diabetes and cancer are age-, sex-, population, and cancer-type specific but, for example, in a study from the Eindhoven Cancer Registry, the Netherlands, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes among patients with cancer of the pancreas was 19%; uterus, 14%; and among young men with kidney cancer, 8%.

The DCSG are a specialist pan-European collective that comprises leading researchers in the field of diabetes and cancer.

If you would like to discuss how you may become involved, please get in touch via email at

The DCSG Background

The Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium (DCRC) was formed in 2010 in response to a controversial publication in Diabetologia in 2009 claiming an association (safety signal) linking the use of anti-diabetes therapies (insulin Glargine) with a higher cancer incidence; a finding not supported by other studies published in the same issue.

In order to resolve these issues, EASD appointed Edwin Gale, Andrew Renehan and Bendix Carstensen to form a task force to advise EASD on the topic (Resulting in a consensus as: (1) and (2) in Diabetologia in 2012). The consortium is one of the activities of the taskforce and has become one of the EASD study groups (The EASD Diabetes and Cancer Study Group (DCSG)).

Following registration as a formal Study Group under the Presidency of Professor Andrew Boulton at 2013’s EASD Annual Conference, the core business of our Study group is the Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium (DCRC).

Scroll down to see a list of recent publications based on DCRC / DCSG collaborations.


The scope of the EASD Diabetes and Cancer Study Group includes (in no particular order of priority):

  • Develop mechanisms to implement the transfer of research observations in this field to clinical practice.
  • Explore and develop mechanisms to better harmonize basic science research between diabetes and cancer.
  • Advise on the support of research workshops, for example, the Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium (DCRC) workshops.
  • Form a platform, together with the DCRC, for major consortia grant applications, such as calls from the European Commission H2020 scheme.
  • Advise and assist in the process of selection of awards for diabetes and cancer research trainees.
  • Advise and assist in the process of selecting diabetes and cancer symposia (for example, topics and speakers at the EASD annual conference).
  • Explore and implement mechanisms of improving education and information to the wider clinical and research communities about the associations between diabetes, diabetes treatment and cancer. Examples may be on several levels, and include:

1. joint symposia with other professional organizations, such as ECCO, EASO, International Diabetes Federation;

2. publications and newsletters;

3. liaison with advocates and lobbyists, such as European Coalition for Diabetes (ECD), Alliance for European Diabetes Research (EUROADIA);

4. link and share ideas of research priorities with related research groups, for example, the CARING project.

Our founding members – Ulf Smith (former EASD President); Edwin Gale (former editor-in-chief of Diabetologia); and Andrew G Renehan (DCSG Chair) – are keen to retain visible affiliations with other related organisations such as European Cancer Organisation (ECCO) and the European Association for the Study of Obesity (EASO).

Previous workshops

The DCRC meet annually with each workshop supported by and feeding into the EASD. The meetings are to discuss progress in the research area, present ongoing work, and to plan joint publications.

Date   Location

2010   Copenhagen, Denmark

2011    Banff, Canada

2012    Brussels, Belguim

2013    Gothenburg, Sweden

2014    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

2015    Manchester, UK

2016    Reykjavik, Iceland

2017     Aarhus, Denmark

Publications based on DCRC / DCSG collaboration

  1. Carstensen B, Read SH, Friis S, Sund R, Keskimäki I, Svensson AM, Ljung R, Wild SH, Kerssens JJ, Harding JL, Magliano DJ, Gudbjörnsdottir S; Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium. Cancer incidence in persons with type 1 diabetes: a five-country study of 9,000 cancers in type 1 diabetic individuals. Diabetologia. 2016 May;59(5):980-8.
  2. Levin D, Bell S, Sund R, Hartikainen SA, Tuomilehto J, Pukkala E, Keskimäki I, Badrick E, Renehan AG, Buchan IE, Bowker SL, Minhas-Sandhu JK, Zafari Z, Marra C, Johnson JA, Stricker BH, Uitterlinden AG, Hofman A, Ruiter R, de Keyser CE, MacDonald TM, Wild SH, McKeigue PM, Colhoun HM; Scottish Diabetes Research Network Epidemiology Group; Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium. Pioglitazone and bladder cancer risk: a multipopulation pooled, cumulative exposure analysis. Diabetologia. 2015 Mar;58(3):493-504.
  3. Zanders MM, Renehan AG, Bowker SL, Carstensen B, van de Poll-Franse LV, Johnson JA. Comment on Bordeleau et al. The association of basal insulin glargine and/or n-3 fatty acids with incident cancers in patients with dysglycemia. Diabetes Care 2014;37:1360-1366.
  4. Carstensen B, Jørgensen ME, Friis S. The epidemiology of diabetes and cancer. Curr Diab Rep. 2014 Oct;14(10):535.
  5. Ranc K, Jørgensen ME, Friis S, Carstensen B. Mortality after cancer among patients with diabetes mellitus: effect of diabetes duration and treatment: (questionable) classification of diabetic patients based on combination of specific glucose-lowering drugs. Reply to Holden SE, Bannister CA, Currie CJ [letter]. Diabetologia. 2014 Sep;57(9):2003-4.
  6. Ranc K, Jørgensen ME, Friis S, Carstensen B. Mortality after cancer among patients with diabetes mellitus: effect of diabetes duration and treatment. Diabetologia. 2014 May;57(5):927-34.
  7. Carstensen B, Witte DR, Friis S. Cancer occurrence in Danish diabetic patients: duration and insulin effects. Diabetologia. 2012 Apr;55(4):948-58.
  8. Renehan AG, Yeh HC, Johnson JA, Wild SH, Gale EA, Møller H; Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium. Diabetes and cancer (2): evaluating the impact of diabetes on mortality in patients with cancer. Diabetologia. 2012 Jun;55(6):1619-32.
  9. Johnson JA, Carstensen B, Witte D, Bowker SL, Lipscombe L, Renehan AG; Diabetes and Cancer Research Consortium. Diabetes and cancer (1): evaluating the temporal relationship between type 2 diabetes and cancer incidence. Diabetologia. 2012 Jun;55(6):1607-18.
"We have created a unique setting in the DCRC for world-leading researchers to come together as peers and discuss and debate their work openly. It is fantastic to see such a wide range of nations united in advancing our understanding of the relationship between T2D and certain cancer types."

Prof Andrew Renehan