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Research projects

Mother-Infant Interactions in Relation to Potential Biomarkers of Beta-Cell Autoimmunity and Type 1 Diabetes

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Tuulia Hyötyläinen

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We have in a recent study observed that genetically predisposed children, who progress rapidly to clinical T1D, have reduced choline phospholipids already in cord blood. This may be due to a low dietary intake of choline phopsholipids and their precursors by the pregnant woman. In the current project study we will study the interplay between serum lipidome and proteome and breast milk lipidome and proteome in the lactating mother. The study will give an answer to the question how closely the maternal dietary intake of choline phospholipids and precursors during pregnancy is related to the circulating concentrations of choline phospholipid in the mother at delivery and how these concentrations are reflected in the cord blood serum in the newborn infant.  This study is expected to provide relevant and important data that will facilitate the prediction and prevention of T1D. If we are able to identify reproducible early biomarkers of T1D detectable before the appearance of the first diabetes-associated autoantibodies it will be possible to start any intervention aimed at preventing progression to clinical T1D earlier than what is currently the case.


Research funding bodies

  • Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF)