Relation of time of introduction of cow milk protein to an infant and risk of type-1 diabetes mellitus

J Proteome Res. 2008 May;7(5):2165-7. doi: 10.1021/pr800041d. Epub 2008 Apr 15.


Several studies of infant feeding show a causal relationship between time of introduction of formula containing cow protein and risk of onset of type-1 diabetes mellitus. This paper cites the literature pro and con and discusses lipocalins which might play a role in the pathogensis. beta Lactoglobulin, a major lipocalin protein in bovine milk, is homologous to the human protein glycodelin (PP14), a T cell modulator. Anti-beta lactoglobulin cross-reacts with glycodelin. The newborn intestine does not have complete "closure" and can pass food antigens. Beta lactoglobulin could generate antibody to glycodelin undermining T cell regulation of beta cells.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Child
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / immunology*
  • Female
  • Glycodelin
  • Glycoproteins / genetics
  • Glycoproteins / immunology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant Food*
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Lactoglobulins / genetics
  • Lactoglobulins / immunology
  • Male
  • Milk / chemistry*
  • Milk Hypersensitivity / immunology
  • Milk Proteins / immunology*
  • Pregnancy Proteins / genetics
  • Pregnancy Proteins / immunology
  • Risk Factors


  • Glycodelin
  • Glycoproteins
  • Lactoglobulins
  • Milk Proteins
  • PAEP protein, human
  • Pregnancy Proteins