Sulfonylurea Therapy Benefits Neurological and Psychomotor Functions in Patients With Neonatal Diabetes Owing to Potassium Channel Mutations

Jacques Beltrand, Caroline Elie, Kanetee Busiah, Emmanuel Fournier, Nathalie Boddaert, Nadia Bahi-Buisson, Miriam Vera, Emmanuel Bui-Quoc, Isabelle Ingster-Moati, Marianne Berdugo, Albane Simon, Claire Gozalo (+7 others)
2015 Diabetes Care  
OBJECTIVE Neonatal diabetes secondary to mutations in potassium-channel subunits is a rare disease but constitutes a paradigm for personalized genetics-based medicine, as replacing the historical treatment with insulin injections with oral sulfonylurea (SU) therapy has been proven beneficial. SU receptors are widely expressed in the brain, and we therefore evaluated potential effects of SU on neurodevelopmental parameters, which are known to be unresponsive to insulin. RESEARCH DESIGN AND
more » ... S We conducted a prospective single-center study. Nineteen patients (15 boys aged 0.1-18.5 years) were switched from insulin to SU therapy. MRI was performed at baseline. Before and 6 or 12 months after the switch, patients underwent quantitative neurological and developmental assessments and electrophysiological nerve and muscle testing. RESULTS At baseline, hypotonia, deficiencies in gesture conception or realization, and attention disorders were common. SU improved HbA 1c levels (median change 21.55% [range 23.8 to 0.1]; P < 0.0001), intelligence scores, hypotonia (in 12 of 15 patients), visual attention deficits (in 10 of 13 patients), gross and fine motor skills (in all patients younger than 4 years old), and gesture conception and realization (in 5 of 8 older patients). Electrophysiological muscle and nerve tests were normal. Cerebral MRI at baseline showed lesions in 12 patients, suggesting that the impairments were central in origin. CONCLUSIONS SU therapy in neonatal diabetes secondary to mutations in potassium-channel subunits produces measurable improvements in neuropsychomotor impairments, which are greater in younger patients. An early genetic diagnosis should always be made, allowing for a rapid switch to SU. Neonatal diabetes is a rare condition that develops during the first months of life with an estimated incidence of 1 in 90,000 newborns (1,2). Neonatal diabetes can be permanent or transient, relapsing around puberty after a period of remission. We recently reported that 42% of patients in a large cohort had a heterozygous
doi:10.2337/dc15-0837 pmid:26438614 fatcat:a4b3hcf3pzgxzciot35jhlk5hi