Background: Recent studies have revealed the presence of zinc and the expression of zinc transporter (ZnT) family members in most endocrine cell types. Moreover it was demonstrated that ZnT family plays an important role in the synthesis and secretion of many hormones. ZnT8 autoantibodies (ZnT8 Ab) next to glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies (GAD Ab), insulin autoantibodies (IAA), and islet antigen-2 antibodies (IA-2 Ab) have been described as markers of autoimmune process in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus.
Objective and hypotheses: Since autoimmune disorders are known to be the pathophysiological factor in development of type 1 diabetes mellitus as well as thyroid diseases, we wanted to estimate in our study, the prevalence of ZnT8 Ab in patients with autoimmune thyroid diseases (AITDs).
Method: The study was performed in the group consisting of 14 Graves disease patients (mean age, 13.3±5.7), 13 Hashimotos thyroiditis patients (mean age, 16.5±2.3), and 83 with DT 1 (mean age, 14±4.7). Patients were recruited from the Endocrinology Outpatient Clinic. GAD, IA-2, IAA, and ZnT8 antibodies concentration was evaluated in the peripheral blood.
Results: In our study we observed the presence of ZnT8 Ab in one patient (7.14%) in the case of Graves disease patients while one patient (7.14%) in this group was positive for GAD Ab. In the case of Hashimotos thyroiditis patients three patients (23%) were positive for ZnT8 Ab. One of ZnT8 Ab positive HT patients had additionally positive GAD Ab, IA-2 Ab, and IAA. In patients with DT1 we identified positive ZnT8 Ab (65.06%), GAD Ab (57.83%), and IA2 (49.4%) antibodies.
Conclusion: In conclusion, these results may suggest that the presence of ZnT8 antibodies might not only be a marker of type 1 diabetes mellitus but also can be associated with other autoimmune diseases especially Hashimotos thyroiditis.
20 - 22 Sep 2014
European Society for Paediatric Endocrinology