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Diabet Med. 2017 Apr;34(4):543-550. doi: 10.1111/dme.13280. Epub 2016 Nov 18.

Higher skin autofluorescence in young people with Type 1 diabetes and microvascular complications.

Author information

1
Institute of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, Australia.
2
Discipline of Child and Adolescent Health, University of Sydney, Westmead, Australia.
3
School of Women's and Children's Health, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.
4
NHMRC Clinical Trials Centre, University of Sydney, Camperdown, NSW, Australia.

Abstract

AIM:

To test the hypothesis that non-invasive skin autofluorescence, a measure of advanced glycation end products, would provide a surrogate measure of long-term glycaemia and be associated with early markers of microvascular complications in adolescents with Type 1 diabetes.

METHODS:

Forearm skin autofluorescence (arbitrary units) was measured in a cross-sectional study of 135 adolescents with Type 1 diabetes [mean ± sd age 15.6 ± 2.1 years, diabetes duration 8.7 ± 3.5 years, HbA1c 72 ± 16 mmol/mol (8.7 ± 1.5%)]. Retinopathy, assessed using seven-field stereoscopic fundal photography, was defined as ≥1 microaneurysm or haemorrhage. Cardiac autonomic function was measured by standard deviation of consecutive RR intervals on a 10-min continuous electrocardiogram recording, as a measure of heart rate variability.

RESULTS:

Skin autofluorescence was significantly associated with age (R2 = 0.15; P < 0.001). Age- and gender-adjusted skin autofluorescence was associated with concurrent HbA1c (R2 = 0.32; P < 0.001) and HbA1c over the previous 2.5-10 years (R2 = 0.34-0.43; P < 0.002). Age- and gender-adjusted mean skin autofluorescence was higher in adolescents with retinopathy vs those without retinopathy [mean 1.38 (95% CI 1.29, 1.48) vs 1.22 (95% CI 1.17, 1.26) arbitrary units; P = 0.002]. In multivariable analysis, retinopathy was significantly associated with skin autofluorescence, adjusted for duration (R2 = 0.19; P = 0.03). Cardiac autonomic dysfunction was also independently associated with skin autofluorescence (R2 = 0.11; P = 0.006).

CONCLUSIONS:

Higher skin autofluorescence is associated with retinopathy and cardiac autonomic dysfunction in adolescents with Type 1 diabetes. The relationship between skin autofluorescence and previous glycaemia may provide insight into metabolic memory. Longitudinal studies will determine the utility of skin autofluorescence as a non-invasive screening tool to predict future microvascular complications.

PMID:
27770590
DOI:
10.1111/dme.13280
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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