Soluble interleukin 2 receptor levels in children with Type I insulin- dependent diabetes mellitus

L. A. Gartner, M. C. Pfeifer, C. Albini, G. L. Francis

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6 Scopus citations


Soluble interleukin 2 receptor (sIL-2R) levels reflect mononuclear cell activation and are elevated in a variety of autoimmune, neoplastic and infectious conditions. Several investigators have studied sIL-2R levels in patients with Type I diabetes mellitus (IDDM), but results have been conflicting. Our primary objective in this study was to compare sIL-2R levels of children and adolescents with newly diagnosed IDDM with those of age- matched controls. In addition, sIL-2R levels in a cohort of patients were followed longitudinally for 1 to 2 years after diagnosis. Serum sIL-2R levels of 38 IDDM children and adolescents (age <20 years) were compared with levels of 39 nondiabetic, age-matched controls. Mean sIL-2R levels declined with age (P < 0.000005), and there was no significant difference in the regression line relating age and sIL-2R levels between patients and controls. The sIL- 2R levels remained fairly consistent over 1-2 years of follow up. The presence of islet cell antibodies (ICA) had no apparent effect on sIL-2R levels in children with diabetes. The sIL-2R levels were similar in magnitude among first degree relatives of patients with IDDM compared to the range of unrelated subjects. It is our conclusion that sIL-2R levels are highest during infancy and decline throughout childhood. The sIL-2R levels do not appear to be clinically useful as a reflection of immune activation in patients with IDDM. Finally, there may be a genetic influence which partially regulates production of sIL-2R.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)44-51
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of Clinical and Laboratory Science
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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