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article imageEnterovirus infection linked to type 1 diabetes

By Tim Sandle     Nov 15, 2014 in Health
Children infected with enterovirus are around fifty percent more likely to develop type 1 diabetes in later life. Genetic and disease factors account for this increased probability.
The reason for the connection between the viral infection and Type 1 diabetes is based on an interaction between genetic susceptibility, the immune system, and a set of environmental factors.
Enterovirus (EV) infections include diseases produced by poliovirus, Coxsackievirus A, Coxsackievirus B, and echovirus. One enterovirus, called D68 (EV-D68), has triggered a series of infections in the U.S. The virus causes increased problems for people who suffer from asthma, especially with children.
To explore the connection between EV-D68 infection and subsequent type 1 diabetes, scientists drew upon a survey drawn from Taiwan's national health insurance system. From the database of demographic information, scientists examined at type 1 diabetes incidence in children up to 18 years of age, with or without diagnosis of EV infection. The population information covered the period 2000-2008.
The findings showed that the incidence of type 1 diabetes was higher in the EV-infected children than in the non-EV infected group (with a forty-eight percent increased incidence rate in EV-infected versus non-EV-infected children). No relationship of allergic rhinitis or bronchial asthma, which are caused by other respiratory system viruses, to type 1 diabetes was found.
Casting the net wider, the researchers also noted that global regions such as Africa, Asia, South America have a low but increasing incidence of type 1 diabetes and high prevalence of enterovirus infection. This trend backed-up the Chines findings.
The findings have been published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes). The study is headed “Enterovirus infection is associated with an increased risk of childhood type 1 diabetes in Taiwan: a nationwide population-based cohort study.”
In related news, scientists have mapped that genome of enterovirus D68, taken from patients treated at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
More about Enterovirus, Diabetes, Type 1
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