Gestational diabetes mellitus affects approximately 7% of all pregnant women. Some of these women develop autoantibodies that are generally characteristic of Type 1 diabetes. Autoantibodies targeting glutamic acid decarboxylase and tyrosine phosphatase-like protein are the most frequently reported. A recently identified autoantigen in Type 1 diabetes is zinc transporter 8. Some reports suggest that the frequency of zinc transporter 8 antibodies is as high as glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies in Type 1 diabetes and thus a good diagnostic marker for autoimmune diabetes. There are currently no reports of zinc transporter 8 antibodies in gestational diabetes. The aim of this pilot study was to investigate the frequency of zinc transporter 8 antibodies in patients at clinical onset of gestational diabetes mellitus.
Subjects included in this pilot study were all diagnosed with gestational diabetes at Skåne University Hospital, Lund, Sweden, 2009-2010 (n = 193). Sera samples were analysed for antibodies using a commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay according to the manufacturers' instructions.
We found that 19/193 patients with gestational diabetes, diagnosed in 2009-2010, were positive for at least one autoantibody. Glutamic acid decarboxylase was the most common single autoantibody (52.6%; 10/19), followed by zinc transporter 8 (21.1%; 4/19) and tyrosine phosphatase-like protein (15.8%; 3/19). Combinations of two or more antibodies were rare (10.5%; 2/19).
In this study, we found that zinc transporter 8 added 2.1% (4/193) of autoantibody positivity in women with gestational diabetes who were negative for glutamic acid decarboxylase and tyrosine phosphatase-like protein antibodies. Glutamic acid decarboxylase was still the most prevalent autoantibody in gestational diabetes, but, as zinc transporter 8 was present even in the absence of glutamic acid decarboxylase, this autoantibody could be an important independent marker of autoimmunity in gestational diabetes. © 2012 The Authors. Diabetic Medicine © 2012 Diabetes UK.
- Endocrinology and Diabetes