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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1999 May;84(5):1534-9.

Diabetes-associated autoantibodies in relation to clinical characteristics and natural course in children with newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes. The Childhood Diabetes In Finland Study Group.

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1
Department of Pediatrics, University of Oulu, Finland.

Abstract

We analyzed 747 children, younger than 15 yr of age, with newly diagnosed diabetes, for antibodies to glutamic acid decarboxylase (GADA), the IA-2 protein (IA-2A), insulin (IAA), and islet cells, to evaluate the influence of positivity for GADA, IA-2A, IAA, or multiple (> or = 3) autoantibodies at diagnosis, on the clinical presentation and natural course of the disease over the first 2 yr and to characterize autoantibody-negative patients. At diagnosis, 73.2% of the children tested positive for GADA, 85.7% for IA-2A, 54.2% for IAA, and 72.6% for multiple autoantibodies. Only 17 subjects (2.3%) had no detectable autoantibodies. The patients testing positive for multiple autoantibodies were younger than the remaining children (P < 0.001). A similar age difference was seen when comparing IAA-positive and -negative patients (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference between the GADA-positive and -negative subjects in the degree of metabolic decompensation at diagnosis, whereas those testing positive for IA-2A had reduced serum C-peptide concentrations (P = 0.003), and those positive for IAA had lower glycated hemoglobin values. The patients with no detectable autoantibodies had higher serum C-peptide levels (P = 0.007) at diagnosis than did the other subjects. The children initially positive for IA-2A had decreased serum C-peptide concentrations at 24 months (P = 0.045), and their daily insulin dose was higher at 18 (P = 0.005) and 24 months (P < 0.001). The patients who tested positive for multiple autoantibodies at diagnosis had decreased serum C-peptide levels (P < 0.001) and higher insulin doses (P = 0.005) at 12, 18, and 24 months. A lower proportion of them were also in clinical remission at 12 and 18 months (P = 0.01). Autoantibody-negative subjects needed less exogenous insulin at 6 and 18 (P = 0.01) and at 24 months (P < 0.001) than the other subjects, and a higher proportion of them were in clinical remission at 18 months (P < 0.001). We conclude that positivity for multiple diabetes-related autoantibodies is associated with accelerated beta-cell destruction and an increased requirement for exogenous insulin over the second year of clinical disease, indicating that multiple autoantibodies reflect an aggressive progression to total beta-cell destruction. Patients testing negative for diabetes-associated autoantibodies at diagnosis seem to have a milder degree of beta-cell destruction, but their metabolic decompensation is similar to that seen in other affected children, suggesting that they do represent classical type 1 diabetes.

PMID:
10323375
DOI:
10.1210/jcem.84.5.5669
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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