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Keywords:

  • enterovirus;
  • CXCL10;
  • type 1 diabetes;
  • serum

Abstract

Most patients with type 1 diabetes are considered to have a T-cell mediated autoimmune disease. The chemokine CXCL10 promotes the migration of activated T-cells. Virus infections might contribute to the pathogenesis of type 1 diabetes and enterovirus protein and/or genome have been detected in β-cells from a majority of tested newly diagnosed children with type 1 diabetes. The chemokine CXCL10 is induced in human islet cells by enterovirus infections in vivo and in vitro, but is not expressed in islets from normal organ donors. Since CXCL10 is a chemokine known to be induced by virus infections and/or cellular damage, our aim was to study if levels of CXCL10 are elevated in serum from children with type 1 diabetes and whether it correlates to the presence of enterovirus markers. CXCL10, neutralizing antibody titer rises against certain enterovirus, and antibodies against GAD65 were measured in serum, and enterovirus PCR was performed on whole blood from 83 type 1 diabetes patients at onset, 48 siblings and 69 controls. CXCL10 was also measured in serum from 46 patients with proven enterovirus infection and in serum from 46 patients with other proven virus infections. The CXCL10 serum levels were not elevated in children at onset of type 1 diabetes and there was a considerable overlap between the groups with 99 (8–498) pg/ml in serum from children with type 1 diabetes, 120 (17–538) pg/ml in serum from controls, and 117 (7–448) pg/ml in siblings of the children with type 1 diabetes. The CXCL10 serum levels in patients with proven enterovirus infection were slightly increased compared to the levels in the other groups, 172 (0–585) pg/ml but there was no statistically significant difference. In contrast, CXCL10 serum levels in patients with other proven virus infections were clearly elevated 418 (34–611) pg/ml. Despite that elevated CXCL10 levels have been demonstrated in some groups of patients with type 1 diabetes, in this study the mean CXCL10 serum levels were not elevated in patients with type 1 diabetes neither in patients with proven enterovirus infection. In contrast, in patients with other virus infections the CXCL10 levels were elevated, presumably reflecting the severity or the site of infection. This suggests that local production of CXCL10 in the affected organ cannot be measured reproducible in serum and that its potential use in clinical practice is limited. J. Med. Virol. 82:1594–1599, 2010. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.