Glucose, insulin concentrations and obesity in childhood and adolescence as predictors of NIDDM

Diabetologia. 1994 Jun;37(6):617-23. doi: 10.1007/BF00403382.


Metabolic abnormalities antedate the development of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) by some years. How these metabolic abnormalities relate to the genetic component of the disease and to the subsequent prediction of diabetes is unknown. The present study was designed to examine the association of parental diabetes with relative weight, fasting and 2-h plasma glucose and fasting and 2-h serum insulin in childhood, and to identify which of these variables were most predictive of subsequent NIDDM. Subjects comprised 1258 Pima Indians aged 5-19 years with normal glucose tolerance participating in a longitudinal population-based study. Age-sex-adjusted values of relative weight, fasting and 2-h glucose and fasting and 2-h insulin were positively associated with parental diabetes. Only one of 138 subjects with two non-diabetic parents developed diabetes. Among 1120 subjects with at least one diabetic parent, 101 (9.0%) developed diabetes during a mean follow up of 8.4 years. Fasting insulin was a significant predictor of diabetes, but did not add to the predictive value of relative weight. Relative weight and 2-h and fasting plasma glucose were the variables most predictive of NIDDM in childhood and adolescence. Against a background of parental diabetes, high fasting insulin concentrations predict diabetes, compatible with the hypothesis that insulin resistance is an early metabolic abnormality leading to NIDDM. In this study, however, its predictive power did not add significantly to that of relative weight, with which it was correlated.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arizona
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Body Constitution
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / ethnology*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / etiology*
  • Female
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American*
  • Insulin / blood*
  • Male
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Risk Factors


  • Blood Glucose
  • Insulin