Prevalence of obesity was related to HLA-DQ in 2-4-year-old children at genetic risk for type 1 diabetes

Int J Obes (Lond). 2014 Dec;38(12):1491-6. doi: 10.1038/ijo.2014.55. Epub 2014 Apr 3.


Objectives: Body size is postulated to modulate type 1 diabetes as either a trigger of islet autoimmunity or an accelerator to clinical onset after seroconversion. As overweight and obesity continue to rise among children, the aim of this study was to determine whether human leukocyte antigen DQ (HLA-DQ) genotypes may be related to body size among children genetically at risk for type 1 diabetes.

Methods: Repeated measures of weight and height were collected from 5969 children 2-4 years of age enrolled in The Environmental Determinants of Diabetes in the Young prospective study. Overweight and obesity was determined by the International Obesity Task Force cutoff values that correspond to body mass index (BMI) of 25 and 30 kg m(-)(2) at age 18.

Results: The average BMI was comparable across specific HLA genotypes at every age point. The proportion of overweight was not different by HL A, but percent obesity varied by age with a decreasing trend among DQ2/8 carriers (P for trend=0.0315). A multivariable regression model suggested DQ2/2 was associated with higher obesity risk at age 4 (odds ratio, 2.41; 95% confidence interval, 1.21-4.80) after adjusting for the development of islet autoantibody and/or type 1 diabetes.

Conclusions: The HLA-DQ2/2 genotype may predispose to obesity among 2-4-year-old children with genetic risk for type 1 diabetes.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Age of Onset
  • Autoantibodies / genetics*
  • Autoimmunity / genetics*
  • Birth Weight
  • Body Height
  • Body Mass Index
  • Body Weight
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / epidemiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / genetics*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / immunology
  • Female
  • Finland / epidemiology
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease
  • Genotype
  • Germany / epidemiology
  • HLA-DQ Antigens / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Islets of Langerhans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening
  • Mothers
  • Pediatric Obesity / epidemiology
  • Pediatric Obesity / genetics*
  • Pediatric Obesity / immunology
  • Prevalence
  • Prospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Sweden / epidemiology
  • United States / epidemiology


  • Autoantibodies
  • HLA-DQ Antigens