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Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2002 Apr;958:285-8.

Autoimmune diabetes in 26 villages outside Madras.

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Department of Epidemiology, MGR Medical University, Madras, India.


Autoimmune diabetes is one of the most common chronic diseases in the world. Autoantibodies against major antigens GAD65 and IA-2 as well as some minor antibodies are markers for autoimmune diabetes already several years before clinical onset in most populations. Screening the population for these autoantibodies can help identify subjects at risk for developing type 1 diabetes. In our study we screened 20,903 inhabitants in 26 villages outside Madras for diabetes. Among them 3.64% were detected to be diabetic. The aim of our study was to detect the presence of glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD65), tyrosine phosphates (IA-2) and tissue transglutaminase (TTG) antibodies. We studied 169 individuals from this population, 75 of them were diagnosed as diabetics, based on presence of sugar in the urine and an elevated blood sugar, 58 had hypertension, and 36 were healthy subjects. We used radioimmunoassay with in vitro translated and transcribed human recombinant 35S-GAD65, IA-2 and TTG antigens. We observed presence of GAD65Ab in 10%, IA-2Ab in 5%, and TTGAb in 5% in diabetic subjects, while the healthy subjects and people with hypertension didn't carry any of these antibodies. We conclude that prevalence of autoimmune diabetes mellitus based on antibody screening in this population is significantly high.

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