Genetic and immunological markers of insulin dependent diabetes in Black Americans

Autoimmunity. 1995;22(1):27-32. doi: 10.3109/08916939508995296.


ICA and GAD65 autoantibody profiles and HLA-DR and DQ analysis were performed on 43 Black juvenile onset IDDM patients and 34 unrelated Black controls from Tennessee, USA. 75% of patients were positive for GAD65 autoantibodies but only 53% had ICA; 39% both ICA and GAD65 antibodies. The strongest HLA association was with the DR3 haplotype DRB1*03 DQA1*0501 DQB1*0201 (63% of patients v 12% of controls RR = 13.0, p < 0.00002). DRB1*04 DQA1*0301 DQB1*0302, associated with IDDM in Caucasians but rare in Negroids, occurred in 27% of patients and 6% of controls (RR = 5.9, p < 0.04). All patients carried DQB1*0302 or DQB1*0201. DQB1*0602 was significantly reduced in patients (2.4% v 41%, RR = 0.036, p < 0.008) and DRB1*1501 was absent in patients (0% v 35%). The frequency of GAD65 autoantibodies in Black American IDDM patients is comparable to that in Caucasians; however ICA positivity is reduced. GAD65 antibodies may therefore be a more sensitive serological test to identify individuals in the Black American general population for markers associated with increased risk of developing IDDM. Current screening methods for predicting preclinical IDDM in Caucasians relies on a combination of immune and HLA markers of IDDM; studies of these markers in the Black Americans will make it possible to extend these options to additional genetically diverse populations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Autoantibodies / analysis
  • Biomarkers*
  • Black People
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / diagnosis
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / genetics*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / immunology*
  • Genetic Markers*
  • Glutamate Decarboxylase / immunology
  • HLA-DQ Antigens / genetics
  • HLA-DR Antigens / genetics
  • Humans
  • Islets of Langerhans / immunology
  • Mice
  • United States


  • Autoantibodies
  • Biomarkers
  • Genetic Markers
  • HLA-DQ Antigens
  • HLA-DR Antigens
  • Glutamate Decarboxylase