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Number of islet autoantibodies present in newly diagnosed type 1 diabetes children born to non-diabetic mothers is affected by islet autoantibodies present at birth.

  • Maria Elfving
  • Bengt Lindberg
  • Kristian Lynch
  • Majvi Månsson
  • Göran Sundkvist
  • Åke Lernmark
  • Sten A Ivarsson
Publishing year: 2008
Language: English
Pages: 127-134
Publication/Series: Pediatric Diabetes
Volume: 9
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

Abstract english

Objective: Cord blood islet autoantibodies in children born to mothers with type 1 diabetes may be associated with a reduced risk of islet autoimmunity and diabetes. The aim of this study was to investigate in children with type 1 diabetes but born to non-diabetic mothers whether islet autoantibodies at birth affected their presence at diagnosis. Patients and methods: Serum samples at birth and at diagnosis were available from 141 children who developed type 1 diabetes between 1 and 19 yr of age (median 9.0 yr; male/female ratio 83/58). The samples were tested for autoantibodies against glutamic acid decarboxylase, insulinoma-associated antigen 2, and insulin as well as for islet cell antibodies. The human leukocyte antigen genotype was also determined. Results: The frequency of islet autoantibodies in the umbilical cord blood was 11% compared with 91% at diagnosis. Children with fewer islet autoantibodies at diagnosis were more likely to have had autoantibodies at birth (p = 0.02). Autoantibodies present in cord blood at birth were observed in 25% (3/12) of children with no islet autoantibodies at diagnosis, in 17% (7/42) of children with one or two antibodies at diagnosis, and in only 5% (4/86) of children with more than two antibodies, demonstrating an inverse relationship between autoantibodies at birth and at diagnosis (test for trend, p < 0.001). Conclusions: Our preliminary data suggest that exposure to cord blood islet autoantibodies may influence the presence of islet autoantibodies at the time of diagnosis of type 1 diabetes and explain why some type 1 diabetes children are islet autoantibody negative at clinical diagnosis.


  • Pediatrics


  • Diabetes and Celiac Unit
  • Paediatric Endocrinology
  • ISSN: 1399-543X
E-mail: ake [dot] lernmark [at] med [dot] lu [dot] se

Principal investigator

Diabetes and Celiac Unit

+46 40 39 19 01

+46 70 616 47 79


Jan Waldenströms gata 35, Malmö


Lund University Diabetes Centre, CRC, SUS Malmö, Jan Waldenströms gata 35, House 91:12. SE-214 28 Malmö. Telephone: +46 40 39 10 00