OBJECTIVE - The majority of type 1 diabetes is considered to be autoimmune with, for the most part, abrupt development. However, type 1 diabetes with slow onset, or the so-called slowly progressive type 1 diabetes or latent autoimmune diabetes in adults, has been recently recognized and is considered to be autoimmune-related. Although some investigators tried to explain the difference in onset pattern by the genetic background, including HLA type, it has not been established thus far. We hypothesized that the difference in onset pattern may relate to regeneration or differentiation of pancreatic β-cells, and we therefore focused on the NeuroD/BETA2 gene, which encodes a transcription factor for the insulin gene and β-cell differentiation. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS - We examined the NeuroD/BETA2 gene polymorphism in 105 Japanese type 1 diabetic patients and in 122 nondiabetic Japanese subjects in a case-control study, and we stratified the patients according to their onset pattern and islet-associated autoantibody positivity. RESULTS - Regardless of the existence of islet-associated autoantibody, we found a significant difference in A allele frequency between type 1 diabetic patients with acute-onset type and control subjects. However, no difference was found between type 1 slow-onset diabetic patients and control subjects. CONCLUSIONS - These results support our hypothesis that NeuroD/BETA2 may affect the ability of regeneration of β-cells, leading to a difference in the onset pattern and clinical course of type 1 diabetes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Advanced and Specialised Nursing