A common vegetable disease could explain why some people develop Type 1 diabetes, according to new research conducted by the International Diabetes Institute and Monash University

The Australian researchers reported yesterday [Monday] that a chemical called bafilomycin is present in a common vegetable disease affecting carrots, beets, turnips and potatoes. It is the same chemical known to destroy the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas of mice.

The scientists now believe that the link could help in the search for a vaccine for people genetically prone to diabetes, because it is possible that the disease could be triggered in a person who consumes the bafilomycin toxin.