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      Neonatal Diabetes

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          Background: Nine distinct genetic conditions have been identified in the last 12 years causing neonatal diabetes mellitus through failure of normal pancreatic development, islet cell dysfunction or β-cell destruction. This review will focus on the three conditions about which our understanding of the pathology – and in some cases the treatment options – has greatly increased: transient neonatal diabetes mellitus, permanent neonatal diabetes due to ‘channelopathies’ and immune dysregulation, polyendocrinopathy, enteropathy X-linked syndrome. Conclusions: Effective treatment of neonatal diabetes requires thorough understanding of the disease processes underlying this highly variable condition. As our knowledge of pancreatic development and physiology expands, so, too, do the treatment options for some patients.

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          Most cited references 23

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          Switching from insulin to oral sulfonylureas in patients with diabetes due to Kir6.2 mutations.

          Heterozygous activating mutations in KCNJ11, encoding the Kir6.2 subunit of the ATP-sensitive potassium (K(ATP)) channel, cause 30 to 58 percent of cases of diabetes diagnosed in patients under six months of age. Patients present with ketoacidosis or severe hyperglycemia and are treated with insulin. Diabetes results from impaired insulin secretion caused by a failure of the beta-cell K(ATP) channel to close in response to increased intracellular ATP. Sulfonylureas close the K(ATP) channel by an ATP-independent route. We assessed glycemic control in 49 consecutive patients with Kir6.2 mutations who received appropriate doses of sulfonylureas and, in smaller subgroups, investigated the insulin secretory responses to intravenous and oral glucose, a mixed meal, and glucagon. The response of mutant K(ATP) channels to the sulfonylurea tolbutamide was assayed in xenopus oocytes. A total of 44 patients (90 percent) successfully discontinued insulin after receiving sulfonylureas. The extent of the tolbutamide blockade of K(ATP) channels in vitro reflected the response seen in patients. Glycated hemoglobin levels improved in all patients who switched to sulfonylurea therapy (from 8.1 percent before treatment to 6.4 percent after 12 weeks of treatment, P<0.001). Improved glycemic control was sustained at one year. Sulfonylurea treatment increased insulin secretion, which was more highly stimulated by oral glucose or a mixed meal than by intravenous glucose. Exogenous glucagon increased insulin secretion only in the presence of sulfonylureas. Sulfonylurea therapy is safe in the short term for patients with diabetes caused by KCNJ11 mutations and is probably more effective than insulin therapy. This pharmacogenetic response to sulfonylureas may result from the closing of mutant K(ATP) channels, thereby increasing insulin secretion in response to incretins and glucose metabolism. (ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00334711 [ClinicalTrials.gov].). Copyright 2006 Massachusetts Medical Society.
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            Activating mutations in the ABCC8 gene in neonatal diabetes mellitus.

            The ATP-sensitive potassium (K(ATP)) channel, composed of the beta-cell proteins sulfonylurea receptor (SUR1) and inward-rectifying potassium channel subunit Kir6.2, is a key regulator of insulin release. It is inhibited by the binding of adenine nucleotides to subunit Kir6.2, which closes the channel, and activated by nucleotide binding or hydrolysis on SUR1, which opens the channel. The balance of these opposing actions determines the low open-channel probability, P(O), which controls the excitability of pancreatic beta cells. We hypothesized that activating mutations in ABCC8, which encodes SUR1, cause neonatal diabetes. We screened the 39 exons of ABCC8 in 34 patients with permanent or transient neonatal diabetes of unknown origin. We assayed the electrophysiologic activity of mutant and wild-type K(ATP) channels. We identified seven missense mutations in nine patients. Four mutations were familial and showed vertical transmission with neonatal and adult-onset diabetes; the remaining mutations were not transmitted and not found in more than 300 patients without diabetes or with early-onset diabetes of similar genetic background. Mutant channels in intact cells and in physiologic concentrations of magnesium ATP had a markedly higher P(O) than did wild-type channels. These overactive channels remained sensitive to sulfonylurea, and treatment with sulfonylureas resulted in euglycemia. Dominant mutations in ABCC8 accounted for 12 percent of cases of neonatal diabetes in the study group. Diabetes results from a newly discovered mechanism whereby the basal magnesium-nucleotide-dependent stimulatory action of SUR1 on the Kir pore is elevated and blockade by sulfonylureas is preserved. Copyright 2006 Massachusetts Medical Society.
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              Clinical and molecular features of the immunodysregulation, polyendocrinopathy, enteropathy, X linked (IPEX) syndrome.

              Immunodysregulation, polyendocrinopathy, enteropathy, X linked (IPEX, OMIM 304790) is a rare, recessive disorder resulting in aggressive autoimmunity and early death. Mutations in FOXP3 have been identified in 13 of 14 patients tested. Research in the mouse model, scurfy, suggests that autoimmunity may stem from a lack of working regulatory T cells. We review published reports regarding the genetics, clinical features, immunology, pathology, and treatment of IPEX. We also report three new patients who were treated with long term immunosuppression, followed by bone marrow transplantation in two. IPEX can be differentiated from other genetic immune disorders by its genetics, clinical presentation, characteristic pattern of pathology, and, except for high IgE, absence of substantial laboratory evidence of immunodeficiency. While chronic treatment with immunosuppressive drugs may provide temporary benefit for some patients, it does not cause complete remission. Remission has been observed with bone marrow transplantation despite incomplete engraftment, but the long term outcome is uncertain.

                Author and article information

                Horm Res Paediatr
                Hormone Research in Paediatrics
                S. Karger AG
                December 2007
                10 December 2007
                : 68
                : Suppl 5
                : 32-36
                Bristol Royal Hospital for Children, Department of Child Health, Bristol, UK
                110471 Horm Res 2007;68:32–36
                © 2007 S. Karger AG, Basel

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                Figures: 1, References: 31, Pages: 5
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