Neuroanatomical Correlates of Dysglycemia in Young Children With Type 1 Diabetes

Diabetes. 2014 Jan;63(1):343-53. doi: 10.2337/db13-0179. Epub 2013 Oct 29.

Abstract

Studies of brain structure in type 1 diabetes (T1D) describe widespread neuroanatomical differences related to exposure to glycemic dysregulation in adults and adolescents. In this study, we investigate the neuroanatomical correlates of dysglycemia in very young children with early-onset T1D. Structural magnetic resonance images of the brain were acquired in 142 children with T1D and 68 age-matched control subjects (mean age 7.0 ± 1.7 years) on six identical scanners. Whole-brain volumetric analyses were conducted using voxel-based morphometry to detect regional differences between groups and to investigate correlations between regional brain volumes and measures of glycemic exposure (including data from continuous glucose monitoring). Relative to control subjects, the T1D group displayed decreased gray matter volume (GMV) in bilateral occipital and cerebellar regions (P < 0.001) and increased GMV in the left inferior prefrontal, insula, and temporal pole regions (P = 0.002). Within the T1D group, hyperglycemic exposure was associated with decreased GMV in medial frontal and temporal-occipital regions and increased GMV in lateral prefrontal regions. Cognitive correlations of intelligence quotient to GMV were found in cerebellar-occipital regions and medial prefrontal cortex for control subjects, as expected, but not for the T1D group. Thus, early-onset T1D affects regions of the brain that are associated with typical cognitive development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Blood Glucose
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / pathology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / psychology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intelligence Tests
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Organ Size

Substances

  • Blood Glucose