Insulin Gene Mutations as Cause of Diabetes in Children Negative for Five Type 1 Diabetes Autoantibodies

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OBJECTIVEHeterozygous, gain-of-function mutations of the insulin gene can cause permanent diabetes with onset ranging from the neonatal period through adulthood. The aim of our study was to screen for the insulin gene in patients who had been clinically classified as type 1 diabetic but who tested negative for type 1 diabetes autoantibodies.RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODSWe reviewed the clinical records of 326 patients with the diagnosis of type 1 diabetes and identified seven probands who had diabetes in isolation and were negative for five type 1 diabetes autoantibodies. We sequenced the INS gene in these seven patients.RESULTSIn two patients whose diabetes onset had been at 2 years 10 months of age and at 6 years 8 months of age, respectively, we identified the mutation GB8S and a novel mutation in the preproinsulin signal peptide (ASignal23S).CONCLUSIONSInsulin gene mutations are rare in absolute terms in patients classified as type 1 diabetic (0.6%) but can be identified after a thorough screening of type 1 diabetes autoantibodies.

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