At diagnosis of type 1 diabetes, approximately 33% of patients are positive for at least one additional organ-specific autoantibody, according to new data.
Researchers at the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes assessed 491 children diagnosed with type 1 diabetes from 2004 to 2009 for other autoimmune conditions. They measured thyroid peroxidase autoantibodies (TPOAb) to screen for autoimmune thyroid disease, tissue transglutaminase autoantibodies (TTGAb) for celiac disease and 21-hydroxylase autoantibodies (21OHAb) for Addison’s disease.
“We sought to define the prevalence of nonislet, organ-specific autoantibodies at the diagnosis of type 1 diabetes and to determine the prevalence of comorbid autoimmune diseases,” the researchers wrote.
Of the 491 children, 82.7% were white and 53.4% were boys. At the time of diagnosis with type 1 diabetes, mean age was 9.6 years and the average HbA1c level was 11.6%. Measurements of TPOAb, TTGAb and 21OHAb were collected within 16 days, on average, and patients were diagnosed with autoimmune thyroid disease, celiac disease or Addison’s disease within 45 days.
Overall, 32.6% of the children had at least one nonislet, organ-specific autoantibody. Of these, 18.6% were diagnosed with additional autoimmune disease. Results revealed that 24.8% were positive for TPOAb, of whom 12.3% had autoimmune thyroid disease. Of the 11.6% with TTGAb, 24.6% had celiac disease. Just 1% of children had 21OHAb, and the researchers found only one case of Addison’s disease.
“Ongoing follow-up of this cohort will be important to determine the natural history of organ-specific autoimmunity in patients with type 1 diabetes,” the researchers wrote. “Key questions remain, including the incidence of autoantibodies over time, the evolution from positive antibodies to disease, the genetic influences on autoimmunity and disease, and patient characteristics that may influence antibody or disease development.”
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Disclosure: The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.
After noticing a growing trend in children diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, doctors and medical researchers have announced a new study measuring the correlation between this autoimmune disorder as well as three others. Addison’s disease, celiac disease, and autoimmune thyroid disease often have antibodies present in children at the same time that they are diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.
It has recently been reported that fifteen to thirty percent of people with Type 1 diabetes have also been diagnosed, and about 4 to 9 percent have been diagnosed with celiac disease. Addison’s disease is at the bottom of the list with less than one percent being diagnosed. Children who have been confirmed to have diabetes should be tested yearly for an autoimmune thyroid disease, and for celiac disease if other symptoms become apparent. There is no real screening schedule for Addison’s disease.