Type 1 Screening Studies Discussed

A three person panel discussed diabetes screening programs in their different countries.

Anette-Gabriele Ziegler, MD, Professor and Director of the Institute of Diabetes Research at Helmholtz Center Munich revealed the findings from a screening programme looking for early stages of type 1 diabetes.

It found around 80 percent of children and adolescents who develop type 1 diabetes by age 15 have already developed their antibodies within the first six years of life. She believed that screening around ages 2 to 5 is likely to be the most efficient.

Riitta Veijola, MD, PhD, Professor, Department of Paediatrics, at the University of Oulu in Finland, spoke about type 1 screening efforts in Northern Europe, including findings from a Finnish study that included more than 24,000 children who had been followed since their infancy.

She said that while the findings were similar to the findings elsewhere optimal screening ages may vary by country and geographical regions.

Cristy Geno Rasmussen, PhD, MPH, Assistant Professor at the University of Colorado and Barbara Davis Center for Diabetes, talked about the Autoimmunity Screening for Kids (ASK) study and screening initiative, which to date has screened more than 33,000 children, ages 1-17, for stage 1 and stage 2 type 1 diabetes. The initiative has expanded from earlier studies focused on high-risk populations to bringing type 1 diabetes screening to the general public.

Dr. Rasmussen said. “Our ultimate goal is to work toward the adoption of universal screening, which becomes standard of care.”