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Cord blood islet autoantibodies are related to stress in the mother during pregnancy.

By Barbro Lernmark, Kristian Lynch, Åke Lernmark and DiPiS Study Group


A 2-month psychological questionnaire concerning pregnancy was answered by 20,920 nondiabetic mothers of singletons. Retrospective analysis showed increased levels of islet autoantibodies (1A) in 290 (1.4%) newborns. High IA levels in the child's cord blood correlated strongly with IA levels in the mother (GADA r = 0.91, P < 0.0001; IA-2A r = 0.75, P = 0.0001). High IA levels were found in newborns whose mothers during pregnancy had been more worried than usual (P = 0.04), had worried that the child would be sick (P = 0.01) or not survive (P = 0.002), or had experienced serious life events, like "serious accident in the family" (P < 0.0001) or "experienced violence" (P = 0.02). Associations with increased worries by the mother remained in newborns with high type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM)-human leukocyte antigen (HLA) risk, but not in non-HLA risk children. ne prospective follow-up of these children will determine the importance of this early 1A for postnatal islet autoimmunity, type I diabetes, or both

Topics: Endocrinology and Diabetes, autoantibodies, stress, type 1 diabetes
Publisher: 'Wiley'
Year: 2006
DOI identifier: 10.1196/annals.1375.053
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