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1.  Systematic population screening, using biomarkers and genetic testing, identifies 2.5% of the UK pediatric diabetes population with monogenic diabetes 
Diabetes care  2016;39(11):1879-1888.
Objective
Monogenic diabetes is rare but an important diagnosis in pediatric diabetes clinics. These patients are often not identified as this relies on recognition of key clinical features by an alert clinician. Biomarkers (islet autoantibodies and C-peptide) can assist in exclusion of patients with Type 1 diabetes and allow systematic testing that does not rely on clinical recognition. Our study aimed to establish the prevalence of monogenic diabetes in UK pediatric clinics using a systematic approach of biomarker screening and targeted genetic testing.
Research design and methods
We studied 808 patients (79.5% of the eligible population) <20 years of age with diabetes attending six pediatric clinics in South West England and Tayside Scotland. Endogenous insulin production was measured using the Urinary C-peptide creatinine ratio (UCPCR). C-peptide positive patients (UCPCR ≥0.2nmol/mmol) underwent islet autoantibody (GAD and IA-2) testing, with negative cases undergoing genetic testing for all 29 identified causes of monogenic diabetes.
Results
2.5% (20/808), (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.6-3.9 %), of patients had monogenic diabetes (8 GCK, 5 HNF1A, 4 HNF4A, 1 HNF1B, 1 ABCC8, 1 INSR). The majority, 17/20, were managed without insulin treatment. A similar proportion of the population had Type 2 diabetes (3.3%, 27/808).
Conclusion
This large systematic study confirms a prevalence of 2.5% with monogenic diabetes aged <20yrs in 6 UK clinics. This figure suggests that around 50% of the estimated 875 UK pediatric patients with monogenic diabetes are still not diagnosed. This biomarker screening pathway is a practical approach that can be used to identify pediatric patients most appropriate for genetic testing.
doi:10.2337/dc16-0645
PMCID: PMC5018394  PMID: 27271189
2.  South Asian individuals with diabetes who are referred for MODY testing in the UK have a lower mutation pick-up rate than white European people 
Diabetologia  2016;59(10):2262-2265.
doi:10.1007/s00125-016-4056-7
PMCID: PMC5016539  PMID: 27435864
Glucokinase; Hepatic nuclear factor 1 alpha; Hepatic nuclear factor 4 alpha; MODY; South Asian
3.  Adherence to oral glucose lowering therapies and associations with one year HbA1c: a retrospective cohort analysis in a large primary care database 
Diabetes care  2015;39(2):258-263.
Objectives
The impact of taking oral glucose-lowering medicines intermittently, rather than as recommended, is unclear. We conducted a retrospective cohort study using community-acquired United Kingdom clinical data (CPRD and GoDARTS databases) to examine the prevalence of non-adherence to treatment for type 2 diabetes, and investigate its potential impact on HbA1c reduction stratified by type of glucose-lowering medication.
Research design and methods
Data for patients treated between 2004 and 2014 were extracted for those newly-prescribed metformin, sulfonylurea, thiazolidinedione or dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors who continued to obtain prescriptions over one year, were extracted. Cohorts were defined by prescribed medication type, and good adherence as a medication possession ratio ≥0.8. Linear regression was used to determine potential associations between adherence and one-year baseline-adjusted HbA1c reduction.
Results
In CPRD and GoDARTS, 13% and 15% of patients respectively were non-adherent. Proportions of non-adherent patients varied by the oral glucose-lowering treatment prescribed (range 8.6% (thiazolidinedione) to 18.8% (metformin)). Non-adherent, compared with adherent, patients had a smaller HbA1c reduction (0.4%[4.4mmmol/mol] and 0.46%[5.0mmol/mol] for CPRD and GoDARTs respectively). Difference in HbA1c response for adherent compared with non-adherent patients varied by drug (range: 0.38%[4.1mmol/mol] to 0.75%[8.2mmol/mol] lower in adherent group). Decreasing levels of adherence were consistently associated with a smaller reduction in HbA1c.
Conclusions
Reduced medication adherence for commonly used glucose lowering therapies among patients persisting with treatment is associated with smaller HbA1c reductions, compared with those taking treatment as recommended. Differences observed in HbA1c responses to glucose lowering-treatments may be explained in part by their intermittent use.
doi:10.2337/dc15-1194
PMCID: PMC4894467  PMID: 26681714
type 2 diabetes; adherence; HbAlc; oral glucose lowering treatment; retrospective cohort
4.  Markers of beta cell failure predict poor glycemic response to GLP-1 receptor agonist therapy in type 2 diabetes 
Diabetes care  2015;39(2):250-257.
Objective
To assess whether clinical characteristics and simple biomarkers of beta cell failure are associated with individual variation in glycemic response to GLP-1 receptor agonist therapy in patients with type 2 diabetes.
Research Design and Methods
We prospectively studied 620 participants with type 2 diabetes and HbA1c ≥58mmol/mol (7.5%) commencing GLP-1 receptor agonist therapy as part of their usual diabetes care and assessed response to therapy over 6 months. We assessed the association between baseline clinical measurements associated with beta cell failure and glycemic response (HbA1c change 0 to 6 months, primary outcome) with change in weight (0 to 6 months) as a secondary outcome using linear regression and ANOVA with adjustment for baseline HbA1c and co-treatment change.
Results
Reduced glycemic response to GLP-1R agonists was associated with longer duration diabetes, insulin co-treatment, lower fasting C-peptide, lower post meal urine C-peptide creatinine ratio and positive GAD or IA2 islet autoantibodies (p≤0.01 for all). Participants with positive autoantibodies or severe insulin deficiency (fasting C-peptide ≤0.25nmol/L) had markedly reduced glycemic response to GLP-1RA therapy (autoantibodies: mean HbA1c change -5.2 vs -15.2 mmol/mol (-0.5 vs -1.4%), p=0.005 C-peptide <0.25nmol/L: mean change -2.1 vs -15.3mmol/mol (-0.2 vs -1.4%), p=0.002). These markers were predominantly present in insulin treated participants and were not associated with weight change.
Conclusions
Clinical markers of low beta cell function are associated with reduced glycemic response to GLP-1R agonist therapy. C-peptide and islet autoantibodies represent potential biomarkers for the stratification of GLP-1R agonist therapy in insulin treated diabetes.
doi:10.2337/dc15-0258
PMCID: PMC4894547  PMID: 26242184
5.  Practical Classification Guidelines for Diabetes in patients treated with insulin: a cross-sectional study of the accuracy of diabetes diagnosis 
The British Journal of General Practice  2016;66(646):e315-e322.
Background
Differentiating between type 1 and type 2 diabetes is fundamental to ensuring appropriate management of patients, but can be challenging, especially when treating with insulin. The 2010 UK Practical Classification Guidelines for Diabetes were developed to help make the differentiation.
Aim
To assess diagnostic accuracy of the UK guidelines against ‘gold standard’ definitions of type 1 and type 2 diabetes based on measured C-peptide levels.
Design and setting
In total, 601 adults with insulin-treated diabetes and diabetes duration ≥5 years were recruited in Devon, Northamptonshire, and Leicestershire.
Method
Baseline information and home urine sample were collected. Urinary C-peptide creatinine ratio (UCPCR) measures endogenous insulin production. Gold standard type 1 diabetes was defined as continuous insulin treatment within 3 years of diagnosis and absolute insulin deficiency (UCPCR<0.2 nmol/mmol ≥5 years post-diagnosis); all others classed as having type 2 diabetes. Diagnostic performance of the clinical criteria was assessed and other criteria explored using receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves.
Results
UK guidelines correctly classified 86% of participants. Most misclassifications occurred in patients classed as having type 1 diabetes who had significant endogenous insulin levels (57 out of 601; 9%); most in those diagnosed ≥35 years and treated with insulin from diagnosis, where 37 out of 66 (56%) were misclassified. Time to insulin and age at diagnosis performed best in predicting long-term endogenous insulin production (ROC AUC = 0.904 and 0.871); BMI was a less strong predictor of diabetes type (AUC = 0.824).
Conclusion
Current UK guidelines provide a pragmatic clinical approach to classification reflecting long-term endogenous insulin production; caution is needed in older patients commencing insulin from diagnosis, where misclassification rates are increased.
doi:10.3399/bjgp16X684961
PMCID: PMC4838443  PMID: 27080317
diabetes mellitus; C-peptide; general practice; insulin-treated diabetes; type 1/type 2 classification; type 1/type 2 diagnosis
6.  Should Studies of Diabetes Treatment Stratification Correct for Baseline HbA1c? 
PLoS ONE  2016;11(4):e0152428.
Aims
Baseline HbA1c is a major predictor of response to glucose lowering therapy and therefore a potential confounder in studies aiming to identify other predictors. However, baseline adjustment may introduce error if the association between baseline HbA1c and response is substantially due to measurement error and regression to the mean. We aimed to determine whether studies of predictors of response should adjust for baseline HbA1c.
Methods
We assessed the relationship between baseline HbA1c and glycaemic response in 257 participants treated with GLP-1R agonists and assessed whether it reflected measurement error and regression to the mean using duplicate ‘pre-baseline’ HbA1c measurements not included in the response variable. In this cohort and an additional 2659 participants treated with sulfonylureas we assessed the relationship between covariates associated with baseline HbA1c and treatment response with and without baseline adjustment, and with a bias correction using pre-baseline HbA1c to adjust for the effects of error in baseline HbA1c.
Results
Baseline HbA1c was a major predictor of response (R2 = 0.19,β = -0.44,p<0.001).The association between pre-baseline and response was similar suggesting the greater response at higher baseline HbA1cs is not mainly due to measurement error and subsequent regression to the mean. In unadjusted analysis in both cohorts, factors associated with baseline HbA1c were associated with response, however these associations were weak or absent after adjustment for baseline HbA1c. Bias correction did not substantially alter associations.
Conclusions
Adjustment for the baseline HbA1c measurement is a simple and effective way to reduce bias in studies of predictors of response to glucose lowering therapy.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0152428
PMCID: PMC4822872  PMID: 27050911
7.  Assessment of the HNF1B Score as a Tool to Select Patients for HNF1B Genetic Testing 
Nephron  2015;130(2):134-140.
Background/Aims
Diagnosing hepatocyte nuclear factor 1β (HNF1B)-related disease is a challenging task due to the phenotypic variability and frequent absence of a family history. An HNF1B score has recently been developed to help select appropriate patients for genetic testing with a negative predictive value (NPV) of 99%. We aimed at testing the clinical utility of this score in a large number of referrals for HNF1B genetic testing to the UK diagnostic testing service for the HNF1B gene.
Methods
An HNF1B score was assigned for 686 UK referrals for HNF1B genetic testing using clinical information available at referral. The performance of the score was evaluated by receiver-operating characteristic curve analysis. The relative discriminatory ability of different clinical features for making a genetic diagnosis of HNF1B-related disease were estimated in the UK dataset alone and pooled with French data.
Results
The HNF1B score discriminated between patients with and without a mutation reasonably well with an area under the curve of 0.72. Applying the suggested cut-off score of ≥8 gave a NPV of 85%. In a pooled analysis, antenatal renal abnormalities, renal hyperechogenicity and cysts were discriminatory in children, whereas renal hypoplasia and cysts were discriminatory in adults. Pancreatic abnormalities were discriminatory in both, whereas other extra-renal characteristics had a large effect size only in adults.
Conclusion
The HNF1B score was discriminatory for HNF1B mutations in a large cohort of individuals tested in a single UK centre. The lower NPV (85 vs. 99%) reduces its clinical utility in selecting patients for HNF1B genetic testing, although validation in a prospective cohort is required.
doi:10.1159/000398819
PMCID: PMC4822678  PMID: 26022541
Area under the curve; Genetic diseases; Kidney disease
8.  Maternal hypothyroxinaemia in pregnancy is associated with obesity and adverse maternal metabolic parameters 
Objective
Subclinical hypothyroidism and isolated hypothyroxinaemia in pregnancy have been associated with an increased risk of gestational diabetes. We aimed to ascertain if these women have a worse metabolic phenotype than euthyroid pregnant women.
Design, subjects and methods
We recruited 956 healthy Caucasian women with singleton, non-diabetic pregnancies from routine antenatal clinics. Detailed anthropometric measurements (including BMI and skinfold thickness) and fasting blood samples (for TSH, free thyroxine (FT4), free triiodothyronine (FT3), HbA1c, lipid profile, plasma glucose and insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) analysis) were obtained at 28 weeks gestation.
Results
In comparison to euthyroid women (n=741), women with isolated hypothyroxinaemia (n=82) had significantly increased BMI (29.5 vs 27.5 kg/m2, P<0.001), sum of skinfolds (57.5 vs 51.3 mm, P=0.002), fasting plasma glucose (4.5 vs 4.3 mmol/l, P=0.01), triglycerides (2.3 vs 2.0 mmol/l, P<0.001) and HOMA-IR (2.0 vs 1.3, P=0.001). Metabolic parameters in women with subclinical hypothyroidism (n=133) were similar to those in euthyroid women. Maternal FT4 was negatively associated with BMI (r=−0.22), HbA1c (r=−0.14), triglycerides (r=−0.17), HOMA-IR (r=−0.15) but not total/HDL cholesterol ratio (r=−0.03). Maternal FT3:FT4 ratio was positively associated with BMI (r=0.4), HbA1c (r=0.21), triglycerides (r=0.2), HOMA–IR (r=0.33) and total/HDL cholesterol ratio (r=0.07). TSH was not associated with the metabolic parameters assessed.
Conclusions
Isolated hypothyroxinaemia, but not subclinical hypothyroidism, is associated with adverse metabolic phenotype in pregnancy, as is decreasing maternal FT4 and increasing FT3:FT4 ratio. These associations may be a reflection of changes in the thyroid hormone levels secondary to increase in BMI rather than changes in thyroid hormone levels affecting body weight and related metabolic parameters.
doi:10.1530/EJE-15-0866
PMCID: PMC4761956  PMID: 26586839
9.  Can clinical features be used to differentiate type 1 from type 2 diabetes? A systematic review of the literature 
BMJ Open  2015;5(11):e009088.
Objective
Clinicians predominantly use clinical features to differentiate type 1 from type 2 diabetes yet there are no evidence-based clinical criteria to aid classification of patients. Misclassification of diabetes is widespread (7–15% of cases), resulting in patients receiving inappropriate treatment. We sought to identify which clinical criteria could be used to discriminate type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Design
Systematic review of all diagnostic accuracy studies published since 1979 using clinical criteria to predict insulin deficiency (measured by C-peptide).
Data sources
14 databases including: MEDLINE, MEDLINE in Process and EMBASE. The search strategy took the form of: (terms for diabetes) AND (terms for C-Peptide).
Eligibility criteria
Diagnostic accuracy studies of any routinely available clinical predictors against a reference standard of insulin deficiency defined by cut-offs of C-peptide concentrations. No restrictions on race, age, language or country of origin.
Results
10 917 abstracts were screened, and 231 full texts reviewed. 11 studies met inclusion criteria, but varied by age, race, year and proportion of participants who were C-peptide negative. Age at diagnosis was the most discriminatory feature in 7/9 studies where it was assessed, with optimal cut-offs (>70% mean sensitivity and specificity) across studies being <30 years or <40 years. Use of/time to insulin treatment and body mass index (BMI) were also discriminatory. When combining features, BMI added little over age at diagnosis and/or time to insulin (<1% improvement in classification).
Conclusions
Despite finding only 11 studies, and considerable heterogeneity between studies, age at diagnosis and time to insulin were consistently the most discriminatory criteria. BMI, despite being widely used in clinical practice, adds little to these two criteria. The criteria identified are similar to the Royal College of General Practitioners National Health Service (RCGP/NHS) Diabetes classification guidelines, which use age at diagnosis <35 years and time to insulin <6 m. Until further studies are carried out, these guidelines represent a suitable classification scheme.
Systematic review registration
PROSPERO reference CRD42012001736.
doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2015-009088
PMCID: PMC4636628  PMID: 26525723
STATISTICS & RESEARCH METHODS
10.  Lower Circulating B12 Is Associated with Higher Obesity and Insulin Resistance during Pregnancy in a Non-Diabetic White British Population 
PLoS ONE  2015;10(8):e0135268.
Objective
Vitamin B12 and folate are critical micronutrients needed to support the increased metabolic demands of pregnancy. Recent studies from India have suggested that low vitamin B12 and folate concentrations in pregnancy are associated with increased obesity; however differences in diet, antenatal vitamin supplementation, and socioeconomic status may limit the generalisability of these findings. We aimed to explore the cross-sectional relationship of circulating serum vitamin B12 and folate at 28 weeks’ gestation with maternal adiposity and related biochemical markers in a white non diabetic UK obstetric cohort.
Methods
Anthropometry and biochemistry data was available on 995 women recruited at 28 weeks gestation to the Exeter Family Study of Childhood Health. Associations between B12 and folate with maternal BMI and other obesity-related biochemical factors (HOMA-R, fasting glucose, triglycerides, HDL and AST) were explored using regression analysis, adjusting for potential confounders (socioeconomic status, vegetarian diet, vitamin supplementation, parity, haemodilution (haematocrit)).
Results
Higher 28 week BMI was associated with lower circulating vitamin B12 (r = -0.25; P<0.001) and folate (r = -0.15; P<0.001). In multiple regression analysis higher 28 week BMI remained an independent predictor of lower circulating B12 (β (95% CI) = -0.59 (-0.74, -0.44) i.e. for every 1% increase in BMI there was a 0.6% decrease in circulating B12). Other markers of adiposity/body fat metabolism (HOMA-R, triglycerides and AST) were also independently associated with circulating B12. In a similar multiple regression AST was the only independent obesity-related marker associated with serum folate (β (95% CI) = 0.16 (0.21, 0.51))
Conclusion
In conclusion, our study has replicated the previous Indian findings of associations between lower serum B12 and higher obesity and insulin resistance during pregnancy in a non-diabetic White British population. These findings may have important implications for fetal and maternal health in obese pregnancies.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0135268
PMCID: PMC4545890  PMID: 26288227
11.  Assessment of the HNF1B Score as a Tool to Select Patients for HNF1B Genetic Testing 
Nephron. Clinical Practice  2015;130(2):134-140.
Background/Aims
Diagnosing hepatocyte nuclear factor 1β (HNF1B)-related disease is a challenging task due to the phenotypic variability and frequent absence of a family history. An HNF1B score has recently been developed to help select appropriate patients for genetic testing with a negative predictive value (NPV) of 99%. We aimed at testing the clinical utility of this score in a large number of referrals for HNF1B genetic testing to the UK diagnostic testing service for the HNF1B gene.
Methods
An HNF1B score was assigned for 686 UK referrals for HNF1B genetic testing using clinical information available at referral. The performance of the score was evaluated by receiver-operating characteristic curve analysis. The relative discriminatory ability of different clinical features for making a genetic diagnosis of HNF1B-related disease were estimated in the UK dataset alone and pooled with French data.
Results
The HNF1B score discriminated between patients with and without a mutation reasonably well with an area under the curve of 0.72. Applying the suggested cut-off score of ≥8 gave a NPV of 85%. In a pooled analysis, antenatal renal abnormalities, renal hyperechogenicity and cysts were discriminatory in children, whereas renal hypoplasia and cysts were discriminatory in adults. Pancreatic abnormalities were discriminatory in both, whereas other extra-renal characteristics had a large effect size only in adults.
Conclusion
The HNF1B score was discriminatory for HNF1B mutations in a large cohort of individuals tested in a single UK centre. The lower NPV (85 vs. 99%) reduces its clinical utility in selecting patients for HNF1B genetic testing, although validation in a prospective cohort is required.
doi:10.1159/000398819
PMCID: PMC4822678  PMID: 26022541
Area under the curve; Genetic diseases; Kidney disease
13.  Identifying Good Responders to Glucose Lowering Therapy in Type 2 Diabetes: Implications for Stratified Medicine 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(10):e111235.
Aims
Defining responders to glucose lowering therapy can be important for both clinical care and for the development of a stratified approach to diabetes management. Response is commonly defined by either HbA1c change after treatment or whether a target HbA1c is achieved. We aimed to determine the extent to which the individuals identified as responders and non-responders to glucose lowering therapy, and their characteristics, depend on the response definition chosen.
Methods
We prospectively studied 230 participants commencing GLP-1 agonist therapy. We assessed participant characteristics at baseline and repeated HbA1c after 3 months treatment. We defined responders (best quartile of response) based on HbA1c change or HbA1c achieved. We assessed the extent to which these methods identified the same individuals and how this affected the baseline characteristics associated with treatment response.
Results
Different definitions of response identified different participants. Only 39% of responders by one definition were also good responders by the other. Characteristics associated with good response depend on the response definition chosen: good response by HbA1c achieved was associated with low baseline HbA1c (p<0.001), high C-peptide (p<0.001) and shorter diabetes duration (p = 0.01) whereas response defined by HbA1c change was associated with high HbA1c (p<0.001) only. We describe a simple novel method of defining treatment response based on a combination of HbA1c change and HbA1c achieved that defines response groups with similar baseline glycaemia.
Conclusions
The outcome of studies aiming to identify predictors of treatment response to glucose lowering therapy may depend on how response is defined. Alternative definitions of response should be considered which minimise influence of baseline glycaemia.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0111235
PMCID: PMC4207765  PMID: 25340784
15.  Identification of Novel Genetic Loci Associated with Thyroid Peroxidase Antibodies and Clinical Thyroid Disease 
Medici, Marco | Porcu, Eleonora | Pistis, Giorgio | Teumer, Alexander | Brown, Suzanne J. | Jensen, Richard A. | Rawal, Rajesh | Roef, Greet L. | Plantinga, Theo S. | Vermeulen, Sita H. | Lahti, Jari | Simmonds, Matthew J. | Husemoen, Lise Lotte N. | Freathy, Rachel M. | Shields, Beverley M. | Pietzner, Diana | Nagy, Rebecca | Broer, Linda | Chaker, Layal | Korevaar, Tim I. M. | Plia, Maria Grazia | Sala, Cinzia | Völker, Uwe | Richards, J. Brent | Sweep, Fred C. | Gieger, Christian | Corre, Tanguy | Kajantie, Eero | Thuesen, Betina | Taes, Youri E. | Visser, W. Edward | Hattersley, Andrew T. | Kratzsch, Jürgen | Hamilton, Alexander | Li, Wei | Homuth, Georg | Lobina, Monia | Mariotti, Stefano | Soranzo, Nicole | Cocca, Massimiliano | Nauck, Matthias | Spielhagen, Christin | Ross, Alec | Arnold, Alice | van de Bunt, Martijn | Liyanarachchi, Sandya | Heier, Margit | Grabe, Hans Jörgen | Masciullo, Corrado | Galesloot, Tessel E. | Lim, Ee M. | Reischl, Eva | Leedman, Peter J. | Lai, Sandra | Delitala, Alessandro | Bremner, Alexandra P. | Philips, David I. W. | Beilby, John P. | Mulas, Antonella | Vocale, Matteo | Abecasis, Goncalo | Forsen, Tom | James, Alan | Widen, Elisabeth | Hui, Jennie | Prokisch, Holger | Rietzschel, Ernst E. | Palotie, Aarno | Feddema, Peter | Fletcher, Stephen J. | Schramm, Katharina | Rotter, Jerome I. | Kluttig, Alexander | Radke, Dörte | Traglia, Michela | Surdulescu, Gabriela L. | He, Huiling | Franklyn, Jayne A. | Tiller, Daniel | Vaidya, Bijay | de Meyer, Tim | Jørgensen, Torben | Eriksson, Johan G. | O'Leary, Peter C. | Wichmann, Eric | Hermus, Ad R. | Psaty, Bruce M. | Ittermann, Till | Hofman, Albert | Bosi, Emanuele | Schlessinger, David | Wallaschofski, Henri | Pirastu, Nicola | Aulchenko, Yurii S. | de la Chapelle, Albert | Netea-Maier, Romana T. | Gough, Stephen C. L. | Meyer zu Schwabedissen, Henriette | Frayling, Timothy M. | Kaufman, Jean-Marc | Linneberg, Allan | Räikkönen, Katri | Smit, Johannes W. A. | Kiemeney, Lambertus A. | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Uitterlinden, André G. | Walsh, John P. | Meisinger, Christa | den Heijer, Martin | Visser, Theo J. | Spector, Timothy D. | Wilson, Scott G. | Völzke, Henry | Cappola, Anne | Toniolo, Daniela | Sanna, Serena | Naitza, Silvia | Peeters, Robin P.
PLoS Genetics  2014;10(2):e1004123.
Autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD) are common, affecting 2-5% of the general population. Individuals with positive thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPOAbs) have an increased risk of autoimmune hypothyroidism (Hashimoto's thyroiditis), as well as autoimmune hyperthyroidism (Graves' disease). As the possible causative genes of TPOAbs and AITD remain largely unknown, we performed GWAS meta-analyses in 18,297 individuals for TPOAb-positivity (1769 TPOAb-positives and 16,528 TPOAb-negatives) and in 12,353 individuals for TPOAb serum levels, with replication in 8,990 individuals. Significant associations (P<5×10−8) were detected at TPO-rs11675434, ATXN2-rs653178, and BACH2-rs10944479 for TPOAb-positivity, and at TPO-rs11675434, MAGI3-rs1230666, and KALRN-rs2010099 for TPOAb levels. Individual and combined effects (genetic risk scores) of these variants on (subclinical) hypo- and hyperthyroidism, goiter and thyroid cancer were studied. Individuals with a high genetic risk score had, besides an increased risk of TPOAb-positivity (OR: 2.18, 95% CI 1.68–2.81, P = 8.1×10−8), a higher risk of increased thyroid-stimulating hormone levels (OR: 1.51, 95% CI 1.26–1.82, P = 2.9×10−6), as well as a decreased risk of goiter (OR: 0.77, 95% CI 0.66–0.89, P = 6.5×10−4). The MAGI3 and BACH2 variants were associated with an increased risk of hyperthyroidism, which was replicated in an independent cohort of patients with Graves' disease (OR: 1.37, 95% CI 1.22–1.54, P = 1.2×10−7 and OR: 1.25, 95% CI 1.12–1.39, P = 6.2×10−5). The MAGI3 variant was also associated with an increased risk of hypothyroidism (OR: 1.57, 95% CI 1.18–2.10, P = 1.9×10−3). This first GWAS meta-analysis for TPOAbs identified five newly associated loci, three of which were also associated with clinical thyroid disease. With these markers we identified a large subgroup in the general population with a substantially increased risk of TPOAbs. The results provide insight into why individuals with thyroid autoimmunity do or do not eventually develop thyroid disease, and these markers may therefore predict which TPOAb-positives are particularly at risk of developing clinical thyroid dysfunction.
Author Summary
Individuals with thyroid peroxidase antibodies (TPOAbs) have an increased risk of autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITD), which are common in the general population and associated with increased cardiovascular, metabolic and psychiatric morbidity and mortality. As the causative genes of TPOAbs and AITD remain largely unknown, we performed a genome-wide scan for TPOAbs in 18,297 individuals, with replication in 8,990 individuals. Significant associations were detected with variants at TPO, ATXN2, BACH2, MAGI3, and KALRN. Individuals carrying multiple risk variants also had a higher risk of increased thyroid-stimulating hormone levels (including subclinical and overt hypothyroidism), and a decreased risk of goiter. The MAGI3 and BACH2 variants were associated with an increased risk of hyperthyroidism, and the MAGI3 variant was also associated with an increased risk of hypothyroidism. This first genome-wide scan for TPOAbs identified five newly associated loci, three of which were also associated with clinical thyroid disease. With these markers we identified a large subgroup in the general population with a substantially increased risk of TPOAbs. These results provide insight into why individuals with thyroid autoimmunity do or do not eventually develop thyroid disease, and these markers may therefore predict which individuals are particularly at risk of developing clinical thyroid dysfunction.
doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1004123
PMCID: PMC3937134  PMID: 24586183
16.  The HNF4A R76W mutation causes atypical dominant Fanconi syndrome in addition to a β cell phenotype 
Journal of Medical Genetics  2013;51(3):165-169.
Background
Mutation specific effects in monogenic disorders are rare. We describe atypical Fanconi syndrome caused by a specific heterozygous mutation in HNF4A. Heterozygous HNF4A mutations cause a beta cell phenotype of neonatal hyperinsulinism with macrosomia and young onset diabetes. Autosomal dominant idiopathic Fanconi syndrome (a renal proximal tubulopathy) is described but no genetic cause has been defined.
Methods and Results
We report six patients heterozygous for the p.R76W HNF4A mutation who have Fanconi syndrome and nephrocalcinosis in addition to neonatal hyperinsulinism and macrosomia. All six displayed a novel phenotype of proximal tubulopathy, characterised by generalised aminoaciduria, low molecular weight proteinuria, glycosuria, hyperphosphaturia and hypouricaemia, and additional features not seen in Fanconi syndrome: nephrocalcinosis, renal impairment, hypercalciuria with relative hypocalcaemia, and hypermagnesaemia. This was mutation specific, with the renal phenotype not being seen in patients with other HNF4A mutations. In silico modelling shows the R76 residue is directly involved in DNA binding and the R76W mutation reduces DNA binding affinity. The target(s) selectively affected by altered DNA binding of R76W that results in Fanconi syndrome is not known.
Conclusions
The HNF4A R76W mutation is an unusual example of a mutation specific phenotype, with autosomal dominant atypical Fanconi syndrome in addition to the established beta cell phenotype.
doi:10.1136/jmedgenet-2013-102066
PMCID: PMC3932761  PMID: 24285859
Renal Medicine; Calcium and Bone; Clinical Genetics; Diabetes; Metabolic Disorders
17.  Lessons From the Mixed-Meal Tolerance Test 
Diabetes Care  2013;36(2):195-201.
OBJECTIVE
Mixed-meal tolerance test (MMTT) area under the curve C-peptide (AUC CP) is the gold-standard measure of endogenous insulin secretion in type 1 diabetes but is intensive and invasive to perform. The 90-min MMTT-stimulated CP ≥0.2 nmol/L (90CP) is related to improved clinical outcomes, and CP ≥0.1 nmol/L is the equivalent fasting measure (FCP). We assessed whether 90CP or FCP are alternatives to a full MMTT.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
CP was measured during 1,334 MMTTs in 421 type 1 diabetes patients aged <18 years at 3, 9, 18, 48, and 72 months duration. We assessed: 1) correlation between mean AUC CP and 90CP or FCP; 2) sensitivity and specificity of 90CP ≥0.2 nmol/L and FCP ≥ 0.1 nmol/L to detect peak CP ≥0.2 nmol/L and the equivalent AUC CP; and 3) how the time taken to reach the CP peak varied with age of diagnosis and diabetes duration.
RESULTS
AUC CP was highly correlated to 90CP (rs = 0.96; P < 0.0001) and strongly correlated to FCP (rs = 0.84; P < 0.0001). AUC CP ≥23 nmol/L/150 min was the equivalent cutoff for peak CP ≥0.2 nmol/L (98% sensitivity/97% specificity). A 90CP ≥0.2 nmol/L correctly classified 96% patients using AUC or peak CP, whereas FCP ≥0.1 nmol/L classified 83 and 85% patients, respectively. There was only a small difference seen between peak and 90CP (median 0.02 nmol/L). The CP peak occurred earlier in patients with longer diabetes duration (6.1 min each 1-year increase in duration) and younger age (2.5 min each 1-year increase).
CONCLUSIONS
90CP is a highly sensitive and specific measure of AUC and peak CP in children and adolescents with type 1 diabetes and offers a practical alternative to a full MMTT.
doi:10.2337/dc12-0836
PMCID: PMC3554273  PMID: 23111058
19.  Urine C-peptide creatinine ratio can be used to assess insulin resistance and insulin production in people without diabetes: an observational study 
BMJ Open  2013;3(12):e003193.
Objectives
The current assessment of insulin resistance (IR) in epidemiology studies relies on the blood measurement of C-peptide or insulin. A urine C-peptide creatinine ratio (UCPCR) can be posted from home unaided. It is validated against serum measures of the insulin in people with diabetes. We tested whether UCPCR could be a surrogate measure of IR by examining the correlation of UCPCR with serum insulin, C-peptide and HOMA2 (Homeostasis Model Assessment 2)-IR in participants without diabetes and with chronic kidney disease (CKD).
Design
Observational study.
Setting
Single-centre clinical research facility.
Participants
37 healthy volunteers and 30 patients with CKD (glomerular filtration rate 15–60) were recruited.
Primary and secondary endpoints
Serum insulin, C-peptide and glucose at fasting (0), 30, 60, 90 and 120 min were measured during an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). Second-void fasting UCPCR and 120 min post-OGTT UCPCR were collected. HOMA2-IR was calculated using fasting insulin and glucose. The associations between UCPCR and serum measures were assessed using Spearman's correlations.
Results
In healthy volunteers, fasting second-void UCPCR strongly correlated with serum insulin (rs=0.69, p<0.0001), C-peptide (rs=0.73, p<0.0001) and HOMA2-IR (rs=−0.69, p<0.0001). 120 min post-OGTT UCPCR correlated strongly with C-peptide and insulin area under the curve. In patients with CKD, UCPCR did not correlate with serum C-peptide, insulin or HOMA2-IR.
Conclusions
In participants with normal renal function, UCPCR may be a simple, practical method for the assessment of IR in epidemiology studies.
doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2013-003193
PMCID: PMC3884748  PMID: 24353253
Diabetes & Endocrinology; Statistics & Research Methods
20.  Five-Year Follow-Up for Women With Subclinical Hypothyroidism in Pregnancy 
Context:
Increasing numbers of women are being treated with l-thyroxine in pregnancy for mild thyroid dysfunction because of its association with impaired neuropsychological development in their offspring and other adverse obstetric outcomes. However, there are limited data to indicate whether treatment should be continued outside of pregnancy.
Objectives:
We aimed to determine whether subclinical hypothyroidism and maternal hypothyroxinemia resolve postdelivery.
Design, Setting, and Participants:
A total of 523 pregnant healthy women with no known thyroid disorders were recruited during routine antenatal care and provided blood samples at 28 weeks of pregnancy and at a mean of 4.9 years postpregnancy.
Main Outcome Measures:
TSH, free T4, free T3, and thyroid peroxidase antibody levels were measured in serum taken in pregnancy and at follow-up.
Results:
Subclinical hypothyroidism in pregnancy (TSH >3 mIU/L) was present in 65 of 523 (12.4%) women. Of these, 49 (75.4%) women had normal thyroid function postpregnancy; 16 of 65 (24.6%) had persistent high TSH (TSH >4.5 mIU/L postpregnancy) with 3 women receiving l-thyroxine treatment. A total of 44 of 523 (8.4%) women had isolated maternal hypothyroxinemia in pregnancy (free T4 <10th centile and TSH ≤3 mIU/L). Only 2 of 44 (4.5%) had TSH >4.5 mIU/L outside pregnancy. Of the women with subclinical hypothyroidism in pregnancy with antibody measurements available, those with thyroid peroxidase antibodies in pregnancy were more likely to have persistently elevated TSH or be receiving l-thyroxine replacement after pregnancy (6 of 7 [86%] vs 10 of 57 [18%], P < .001).
Conclusions:
The majority of cases of subclinical hypothyroidism in pregnancy are transient, so treatment with l-thyroxine in these patients should be reviewed because it may not be warranted after pregnancy.
doi:10.1210/jc.2013-2768
PMCID: PMC4207946  PMID: 24217906
21.  The majority of patients with long-duration type 1 diabetes are insulin microsecretors and have functioning beta cells 
Diabetologia  2013;57(1):187-191.
Aims/hypothesis
Classically, type 1 diabetes is thought to proceed to absolute insulin deficiency. Recently developed ultrasensitive assays capable of detecting C-peptide under 5 pmol/l now allow very low levels of C-peptide to be detected in patients with long-standing type 1 diabetes. It is not known whether this low-level endogenous insulin secretion responds to physiological stimuli. We aimed to assess how commonly low-level detectable C-peptide occurs in long-duration type 1 diabetes and whether it responds to a meal stimulus.
Methods
We performed a mixed-meal tolerance test in 74 volunteers with long-duration (>5 years) type 1 diabetes, i.e. with age at diagnosis 16 (9–23) years (median [interquartile range]) and diabetes duration of 30 (19–41) years. We assessed fasting and stimulated serum C-peptide levels using an electrochemiluminescence assay (detection limit 3.3 pmol/l), and also the urinary C-peptide:creatinine ratio (UCPCR).
Results
Post-stimulation serum C-peptide was detectable at very low levels (>3.3 pmol/l) in 54 of 74 (73%) patients. In all patients with detectable serum C-peptide, C-peptide either increased (n = 43, 80%) or stayed the same (n = 11) in response to a meal, with no indication of levels falling (p < 0.0001). With increasing disease duration, absolute C-peptide levels fell although the numbers with detectable C-peptide remained high (68%, i.e. 25 of 37 patients with >30 years duration). Similar results were obtained for UCPCR.
Conclusions/interpretation
Most patients with long-duration type 1 diabetes continue to secrete very low levels of endogenous insulin, which increase after meals. This is consistent with the presence of a small number of still functional beta cells and implies that beta cells are either escaping immune attack or undergoing regeneration.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00125-013-3067-x) contains peer-reviewed but unedited supplementary material, which is available to authorised users.
doi:10.1007/s00125-013-3067-x
PMCID: PMC3855529  PMID: 24121625
C-peptide; Insulin; Microsecretor
22.  Cross-sectional and longitudinal studies suggest pharmacological treatment used in patients with glucokinase mutations does not alter glycaemia 
Diabetologia  2013;57(1):54-56.
Aims/hypothesis
Heterozygous glucokinase (GCK) mutations cause mild, fasting hyperglycaemia from birth. Although patients are usually asymptomatic and have glycaemia within target ranges, some are put on pharmacological treatment. We aimed to investigate how many patients are on pharmacological treatment and the impact of treatment on glycaemic control.
Methods
Treatment details were ascertained for 799 patients with heterozygous GCK mutations. In a separate, longitudinal study, HbA1c was obtained for 16 consecutive patients receiving insulin (n = 10) or oral hypoglycaemic agents (OHAs) (n = 6) whilst on treatment, and again having discontinued treatment following a genetic diagnosis of GCK-MODY. For comparison, HbA1c before and after genetic testing was studied in a control group (n = 18) not receiving pharmacological therapy.
Results
At referral for genetic testing, 168/799 (21%) of patients were on pharmacological treatment (13.5% OHAs, 7.5% insulin). There was no difference in the HbA1c of these patients compared with those receiving no treatment(median [IQR]: 48 [43, 51] vs 46 [43, 50] mmol/mol, respectively; 6.5% [6.1%, 6.8%] vs 6.4% [6.1%, 6.7%]; p = 0.11). Following discontinuation of pharmacological treatment in 16 patients, HbA1c did not change. The mean change in HbA1c was −0.68 mmol/mol (95% CI: −2.97, 1.61) (−0.06% [95% CI: −0.27, 0.15]).
Conclusions/interpretation
Prior to a genetic diagnosis, 21% of patients were on pharmacological treatment. HbA1c was no higher than in untreated patients and did not change when therapy was discontinued, suggesting no impact on glycaemia. The lack of response to pharmacological therapy is likely to reflect the regulated hyperglycaemia seen in these patients owing to their glucose sensing defect and is an example of pharmacogenetics.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00125-013-3075-x) contains peer reviewed but unedited supplementary material, which is available to authorised users.
doi:10.1007/s00125-013-3075-x
PMCID: PMC3855531  PMID: 24092492
GCK mutation; Glucokinase; MODY; Pharmacogenetics; Treatment
23.  Multiple type 2 diabetes susceptibility genes following genome-wide association scan in UK samples 
Science (New York, N.Y.)  2007;316(5829):1336-1341.
The molecular mechanisms involved in the development of type 2 diabetes are poorly understood. Starting from genome-wide genotype data for 1,924 diabetic cases and 2,938 population controls generated by the Wellcome Trust Case Control Consortium, we set out to detect replicated diabetes association signals through analysis of 3,757 additional cases and 5,346 controls, and by integration of our findings with equivalent data from other international consortia. We detected diabetes susceptibility loci in and around the genes CDKAL1, CDKN2A/CDKN2B and IGF2BP2 and confirmed the recently described associations at HHEX/IDE and SLC30A8. Our findings provide insights into the genetic architecture of type 2 diabetes, emphasizing the contribution of multiple variants of modest effect. The regions identified underscore the importance of pathways influencing pancreatic beta cell development and function in the etiology of type 2 diabetes.
doi:10.1126/science.1142364
PMCID: PMC3772310  PMID: 17463249
24.  New loci associated with birth weight identify genetic links between intrauterine growth and adult height and metabolism 
Horikoshi, Momoko | Yaghootkar, Hanieh | Mook-Kanamori, Dennis O. | Sovio, Ulla | Taal, H. Rob | Hennig, Branwen J. | Bradfield, Jonathan P. | St. Pourcain, Beate | Evans, David M. | Charoen, Pimphen | Kaakinen, Marika | Cousminer, Diana L. | Lehtimäki, Terho | Kreiner-Møller, Eskil | Warrington, Nicole M. | Bustamante, Mariona | Feenstra, Bjarke | Berry, Diane J. | Thiering, Elisabeth | Pfab, Thiemo | Barton, Sheila J. | Shields, Beverley M. | Kerkhof, Marjan | van Leeuwen, Elisabeth M. | Fulford, Anthony J. | Kutalik, Zoltán | Zhao, Jing Hua | den Hoed, Marcel | Mahajan, Anubha | Lindi, Virpi | Goh, Liang-Kee | Hottenga, Jouke-Jan | Wu, Ying | Raitakari, Olli T. | Harder, Marie N. | Meirhaeghe, Aline | Ntalla, Ioanna | Salem, Rany M. | Jameson, Karen A. | Zhou, Kaixin | Monies, Dorota M. | Lagou, Vasiliki | Kirin, Mirna | Heikkinen, Jani | Adair, Linda S. | Alkuraya, Fowzan S. | Al-Odaib, Ali | Amouyel, Philippe | Andersson, Ehm Astrid | Bennett, Amanda J. | Blakemore, Alexandra I.F. | Buxton, Jessica L. | Dallongeville, Jean | Das, Shikta | de Geus, Eco J. C. | Estivill, Xavier | Flexeder, Claudia | Froguel, Philippe | Geller, Frank | Godfrey, Keith M. | Gottrand, Frédéric | Groves, Christopher J. | Hansen, Torben | Hirschhorn, Joel N. | Hofman, Albert | Hollegaard, Mads V. | Hougaard, David M. | Hyppönen, Elina | Inskip, Hazel M. | Isaacs, Aaron | Jørgensen, Torben | Kanaka-Gantenbein, Christina | Kemp, John P. | Kiess, Wieland | Kilpeläinen, Tuomas O. | Klopp, Norman | Knight, Bridget A. | Kuzawa, Christopher W. | McMahon, George | Newnham, John P. | Niinikoski, Harri | Oostra, Ben A. | Pedersen, Louise | Postma, Dirkje S. | Ring, Susan M. | Rivadeneira, Fernando | Robertson, Neil R. | Sebert, Sylvain | Simell, Olli | Slowinski, Torsten | Tiesler, Carla M.T. | Tönjes, Anke | Vaag, Allan | Viikari, Jorma S. | Vink, Jacqueline M. | Vissing, Nadja Hawwa | Wareham, Nicholas J. | Willemsen, Gonneke | Witte, Daniel R. | Zhang, Haitao | Zhao, Jianhua | Wilson, James F. | Stumvoll, Michael | Prentice, Andrew M. | Meyer, Brian F. | Pearson, Ewan R. | Boreham, Colin A.G. | Cooper, Cyrus | Gillman, Matthew W. | Dedoussis, George V. | Moreno, Luis A | Pedersen, Oluf | Saarinen, Maiju | Mohlke, Karen L. | Boomsma, Dorret I. | Saw, Seang-Mei | Lakka, Timo A. | Körner, Antje | Loos, Ruth J.F. | Ong, Ken K. | Vollenweider, Peter | van Duijn, Cornelia M. | Koppelman, Gerard H. | Hattersley, Andrew T. | Holloway, John W. | Hocher, Berthold | Heinrich, Joachim | Power, Chris | Melbye, Mads | Guxens, Mònica | Pennell, Craig E. | Bønnelykke, Klaus | Bisgaard, Hans | Eriksson, Johan G. | Widén, Elisabeth | Hakonarson, Hakon | Uitterlinden, André G. | Pouta, Anneli | Lawlor, Debbie A. | Smith, George Davey | Frayling, Timothy M. | McCarthy, Mark I. | Grant, Struan F.A. | Jaddoe, Vincent W.V. | Jarvelin, Marjo-Riitta | Timpson, Nicholas J. | Prokopenko, Inga | Freathy, Rachel M.
Nature genetics  2012;45(1):76-82.
Birth weight within the normal range is associated with a variety of adult-onset diseases, but the mechanisms behind these associations are poorly understood1. Previous genome-wide association studies identified a variant in the ADCY5 gene associated both with birth weight and type 2 diabetes, and a second variant, near CCNL1, with no obvious link to adult traits2. In an expanded genome-wide association meta-analysis and follow-up study (up to 69,308 individuals of European descent from 43 studies), we have now extended the number of genome-wide significant loci to seven, accounting for a similar proportion of variance to maternal smoking. Five of the loci are known to be associated with other phenotypes: ADCY5 and CDKAL1 with type 2 diabetes; ADRB1 with adult blood pressure; and HMGA2 and LCORL with adult height. Our findings highlight genetic links between fetal growth and postnatal growth and metabolism.
doi:10.1038/ng.2477
PMCID: PMC3605762  PMID: 23202124
25.  Use of HbA1c in the Identification of Patients with Hyperglycaemia Caused by a Glucokinase Mutation: Observational Case Control Studies 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(6):e65326.
Aims
HaemoglobinA1c (HbA1c) is recommended for diabetes diagnosis but fasting plasma glucose (FPG) has been useful for identifying patients with glucokinase (GCK) mutations which cause lifelong persistent fasting hyperglycaemia. We aimed to derive age-related HbA1c reference ranges for these patients to determine how well HbA1c can discriminate patients with a GCK mutation from unaffected family members and young-onset type 1 (T1D) and type 2 diabetes (T2D) and to investigate the proportion of GCK mutation carriers diagnosed with diabetes using HbA1c and/or FPG diagnostic criteria.
Methods
Individuals with inactivating GCK mutations (n = 129), familial controls (n = 100), T1D (n = 278) and T2D (n = 319) aged ≥18years were recruited. Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) analysis determined effectiveness of HbA1c and FPG to discriminate between groups.
Results
HbA1c reference ranges in subjects with GCK mutations were: 38–56 mmol/mol (5.6–7.3%) if aged ≤40years; 41–60 mmol/mol (5.9–7.6%) if >40years. All patients (123/123) with a GCK mutation were above the lower limit of the HbA1c age-appropriate reference ranges. 69% (31/99) of controls were below these lower limits. HbA1c was also effective in discriminating those with a GCK mutation from those with T1D/T2D. Using the upper limit of the age-appropriate reference ranges to discriminate those with a mutation from those with T1D/T2D correctly identified 97% of subjects with a mutation. The majority (438/597 (73%)) with other types of young-onset diabetes had an HbA1c above the upper limit of the age-appropriate GCK reference range. HbA1c ≥48 mmol/mol classified more people with GCK mutations as having diabetes than FPG ≥7 mmol/l (68% vs. 48%, p = 0.0009).
Conclusions
Current HbA1c diagnostic criteria increase diabetes diagnosis in patients with a GCK mutation. We have derived age-related HbA1c reference ranges that can be used for discriminating hyperglycaemia likely to be caused by a GCK mutation and aid identification of probands and family members for genetic testing.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0065326
PMCID: PMC3683003  PMID: 23799006

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