Autoantibodies to the islet cell antigen SOX-13 are associated with duration but not type of diabetes.
T. M. E. Davis, Z. Mehta, I. R. Mackay, C. A. Cull, D. G. Bruce, S. Fida, M. J. Rowley and R. R. Holman
Diabetic Medicine 2003; 20: 198-204
The autoantigen SOX-13 of the SRY-related high mobility group box is a low-frequency reactant in sera from patients with Type 1 diabetes. We further investigated the potential diagnostic role of anti-SOX-13, and in particular its ability to distinguish Type 1 from Type 2 diabetes, in two large, well-characterized cohorts.
SOX-13 autoantibody status was ascertained using a radioimmunoprecipitation assay in (i) a random sample of 546 participants in an Australian community-based study (the Fremantle Diabetes Study; FDS) of whom 119 had Type 1 and 427 Type 2 diabetes, and (ii) a sample of 333 subjects with Type 2 diabetes from the United Kingdom Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS) stratified by age, anti-glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD) and islet cell antibody (ICA) status, and requirement for insulin therapy within 6 years of diagnosis.
The frequencies of anti-SOX-13 in the FDS subjects were 16.0% and 14.8% for Type 1 and Type 2 patients, respectively, and levels were similar. In the UKPDS subjects, the frequency was 4.5%. In a logistic regression model involving demographic, anthropometric and metabolic variables, only diabetes duration was significantly associated with anti-SOX-13 positivity, especially for duration > 5 years (P< 0.002). When the coexistence of autoantibodies was assessed in the two study samples, there were no significant associations between anti-SOX-13 and ICA, anti-GAD or ICA512/IA-2.
Whilst the frequency of anti-SOX-13 may be increased in some populations of diabetic patients, this reactivity does not usefully distinguish Type 1 from Type 2 diabetes. However, the association with diabetes duration suggests that anti-SOX-13 may be a non-specific marker of tissue damage associated with chronic hyperglycaemia.