Glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies are present in some patients with therapy-resistant epilepsy. The authors measured glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies in an unselected population of 114 children with different types of epilepsy. Three children with temporal lobe epilepsy and six children with various other types of epilepsy had intractable epilepsy. None of the children tested positive for glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies. The study suggests that glutamic acid decarboxylase antibody testing cannot be recommended in unselected cases of childhood epilepsy.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate pubertal development and peripheral concentrations of gonadotrophins and sex hormones in children with shunted hydrocephalus compared with healthy controls. STUDY DESIGN: 114 patients (52 females, 62 males) and 73 healthy controls (35 females, 38 males) aged 5 to 20 years were analysed for stage of puberty, age at menarche, testicular volume, basal serum follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinising hormone (LH), sex hormone binding globulin (SHBG), testosterone and oestradiol concentrations, and free androgen index. RESULTS: Male gonadal and male and female pubic hair development occurred significantly earlier in the patients than in the controls. The mean age at menarche was significantly lower in the female patients than in their controls (11.7 v 13.2 years; p
To evaluate ovarian and adrenal steroid secretion in women with severe hyperandrogenism.
A prospective study.
The Gynecological Endocrine Research Unit of the University Central Hospital, Oulu, Finland.
Thirteen obese, hirsute women with severe hyperandrogenism.
Adrenocorticotropin hormone stimulation and dexamethasone suppression tests and selective catheterizations of the left ovarian and adrenal veins were performed.
The concentrations of insulin, P, 17-hydroxyprogesterone (17-OHP), androstenedione (A), T, DHEA, DHEAS, and cortisol were measured.
The secretory gradients of T and its precursors, P, 17-OHP, A, and DHEA in the selective catheterizations showed the adrenal to be the main source of excessive steroid production in these patients. The concentrations of P (r = 0.82), 17-OHP (r = 0.89), A (r = 0.84), T (r = 0.86), and cortisol (r = 0.87) in the adrenal vein showed a strong correlation with insulin measured from the same samples.
Excessive androgens were secreted mainly by the adrenals in these obese hyperinsulinemic women. Correlation analyses suggested that insulin stimulates adrenal androgen and cortisol secretion, which may constitute an important component of the pathogenetic mechanisms of hyperandrogenism and the polycystic ovary syndrome.
Epidemiological data have indicated that some infections are associated with a low risk of allergic diseases, thus supporting the idea (hygiene hypothesis) that the microbial load is an important environmental factor conferring protection against the development of allergies. We set out to test the hygiene hypothesis in a unique epidemiological setting in two socio-economically and culturally markedly different, although genetically related, populations living in geographically adjacent areas. The study cohorts included 266 schoolchildren from the Karelian Republic in Russia and 266 schoolchildren from Finland. The levels of total IgE and allergen-specific IgE for birch, cat and egg albumen were measured. Microbial antibodies were analysed against enteroviruses (coxsackievirus B4), hepatitis A virus, Helicobacter pylori and Toxoplasma gondii. Although total IgE level was higher in Russian Karelian children compared to their Finnish peers, the prevalence of allergen-specific IgE was lower among Russian Karelian children. The prevalence of microbial antibodies was, in turn, significantly more frequent in the Karelian children, reflecting the conspicuous difference in socio-economic background factors. Microbial infections were associated with lower risk of allergic sensitization in Russian Karelian children, enterovirus showing the strongest protective effect in a multivariate model. The present findings support the idea that exposure to certain infections, particularly in childhood, may protect from the development of atopy. Enterovirus infections represent a new candidate to the list of markers of such a protective environment. However, possible causal relationship needs to be confirmed in further studies.
PURPOSE: Polycystic ovaries and menstrual disturbances seem to be common among women taking valproate for epilepsy. The purpose of the present study was to assess the frequency of valproate-related metabolic and endocrine disorders in different groups of women with epilepsy. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Seventy-two women with epilepsy and 52 control subjects from centers in three European countries (Finland, Norway, and the Netherlands) participated in the study. Thirty-seven of the women with epilepsy were taking valproate monotherapy and 35 carbamazepine monotherapy. RESULTS: The frequency of polycystic ovaries or hyperandrogenism, or both, among valproate-treated women with epilepsy was 70% (26 of 37) compared with 19% (10 of 52) among control subjects (P
A CA-repeat polymorphism within the first intron of the interferon (IFN)-gamma gene was analyzed. This polymorphism was recently demonstrated to be associated with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) in Japanese subjects. We typed 266 IDDM patients and 195 control subjects of Danish Caucasoid origin. No significant differences in allele or genotype frequencies between patients and control were observed. In addition, we typed 168 IDDM and 110 control subjects of Finnish origin. A significant disease association of the studied IFN-gamma allelic pattern was found (p = 0.029). Analysis of data according to HLA-DQB1 susceptibility status did not reveal heterogeneity of risk at the IFN-gamma locus in either of the populations. Fifty-five Danish and 94 Finnish IDDM multiplex families with at least two affected siblings (660 individuals) were typed to test for transmission disequilibrium (TDT). No evidence for overall transmission disequilibrium using either an allele-wise (p = 0.42; combined data) or a genotype-wise analysis (p = 0.21; combined data) could be detected. Thus, the modest significance level observed in the Finnish case-control study and the failure to replicate it by the TDT provide little support for the hypothesis that the IFN-gamma gene microsatellite is associated with IDDM.
Antibodies to glutamate decarboxylase (GAD65Ab) may persist, and their titres even increase after the clinical onset of type 1 diabetes. To characterize this phenomenon in detail, we analysed sequentially antibodies to GAD65 epitope clusters in a radio-binding assay in patients with type 1 diabetes. Serum samples were taken at diagnosis and 2, 5 and 10 years later from 50 young patients who had tested positive for GAD65Ab at least once during observation. The levels of GAD65Ab peaked in 21 patients after diagnosis. Antibodies to the middle region of GAD65 (GAD65-M-Ab, 88%) were more common at diagnosis than antibodies to the C-terminal (GAD65-C-Ab, 68%, P
We analysed the previously reported association of the HLA-A*24:02, B*18 and B*39 alleles with type 1 diabetes and diabetes associated autoimmunity in the Finnish population applying HLA-DR/DQ stratification.
Haplotype transmission was analysed in 2424 nuclear families from the Finnish Paediatric Diabetes Register. Survival analysis was applied to study the development of islet autoantibodies and further progression to clinical diabetes in the prospective follow-up cohort from the Finnish Type 1 Diabetes Prediction and Prevention (DIPP) Study. The subjects were genotyped for specific HLA class I alleles by sequence-specific hybridization using lanthanide labelled nucleotide probes.
The HLA-B*39:06 allele was found almost exclusively on the (DR8)-DQB1*04 haplotype in which its presence changed the disease risk status of the whole haplotype from neutral to predisposing. The HLA-A*24:02 and the B*39:01 alleles increased the diabetes-associated risk of the DRB1*04:04-DQA1*03-DQB1*03:02 haplotype but the alleles were in linkage disequilibrium and no independent effect could be detected. Within the DIPP cohort, neither the A*24:02 nor the B*39:01 allele were associated with seroconversion but were in contrast associated with increased progression from seroconversion to clinical disease.
The independent predisposing effect of the HLA-B*39:06 allele with type 1 diabetes was confirmed in the Finnish population but the association of the A*24:02 and B*39:01 alleles remained inconclusive whilst both A*24:02 and B*39:01 affected the progression rate from seroconversion to autoantibody positivity to overt type 1 diabetes.
To study the persistence of Type I (insulin-dependent) diabetes mellitus associated autoantibodies and their relation to genetic risk markers and clinical characteristics of the disease after clinical manifestation, serum samples were obtained from 90 children and adolescents at diagnosis and 2, 5 and 10 years later. The samples were analysed for islet cell antibodies (ICA) by immunofluorescence and for antibodies to glutamic acid decarboxylase (GADA), intracellular portion of the protein tyrosine phosphatase related IA-2 antigen (IA-2A) and insulin autoantibodies by specific radiobinding assays. Of the subjects tested 79% were positive for IA-2A at diagnosis, 62% for GADA, 81% for ICA and 28% for insulin autoantibodies, but the prevalence of IA-2A, GADA and ICA decreased substantially as a function of increasing duration of the disease (p