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Hagopian Paper Published in DIABETES

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January 22, 2015

Dr. William Hagopian’s paper, “Role of Type 1 diabetes associated SNPs on risk of autoantibody positivity in the TEDDY Study,” was recently published in Diabetes. He and his co-authors run a study of the environmental determinants of type 1 diabetes (TEDDY), which is following 8,677 children for 15 years.

Variations in human leukocyte antigen (HLA) genes are known to be associated with an increased risk of developing islet autoantibodies, markers that reveal the early stages of type 1 diabetes. The paper identifies non-HLA genes whose variations are also associated with developing islet autoantibodies and type 1 diabetes.

The variations consist of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) each of which is a change in only one position in the DNA chain. Importantly, each of these changes often marks differences in a wider expanse of DNA called an extended haplotype.  The SNPs linked to diabetes have been described before, but this study is unique in analyzing their relationship to the islet autoantibodies, rather than to the later occurrence of clinical type 1 diabetes.

The study also analyzes these associations based on age of development of the autoantibodies, a prospective analysis of time-to-event rather than the usual cross-sectional analysis which looks at only one time point. 

“The approach carries more power to resolve these genetic associations,” said Dr. Hagopian, “allowing a study of smaller size, like TEDDY, to find associations similar to that of the typically much larger genome-wide association studies of diabetes.”

PubMed Abstract, More about Dr. Hagopian's Lab