Novel neutrophil phenotypic signature in pediatric patients with type 1 diabetes and diabetic ketoacidosis

Blake E. Nichols, Jessica S. Hook, Kayson Weng, Chul Ahn, Jessica G. Moreland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a chronic inflammatory condition sometimes complicated by acute diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA). A subset of patients with T1D develop DKA independent of known risk factors. This study tested the hypothesis that circulating polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) from children with T1D and DKA would exhibit a primed phenotype and that the signature would be unique in patients predisposed to have DKA. Using a prospective cohort study design, neutrophil phenotype was assessed in 30 patients with T1D seen in endocrinology clinic for routine care, 30 patients with acute DKA, and 36 healthy donors. Circulating PMN from patients with DKA display a primed phenotype with increased basal cell-surface CD11b, L-selectin shedding, and enhanced fMLF-elicited reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. Moreover, PMN from T1D patients both with and without DKA lack the capacity to be further primed by incubation with TNF-α, a classic priming stimulus. Primed PMN phenotypic signatures demonstrated are independent of hemoglobin A1c, the premier biological marker for DKA risk, and are consistent with a hyperinflammatory state. A single nucleotide polymorphism in TLR-1 (1805G>T), known to be associated with a hyperinflammatory PMN phenotype, correlated with DKA. This study elucidated a novel phenotypic signature in circulating PMN from children with T1D with and without DKA, and suggests the possibility of a previously unrecognized PMN phenotype with potential clinical implications. Immunophenotype and genotype may be applicable as biomarkers for DKA risk stratification in patients with T1D.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)849-856
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Leukocyte Biology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2022


  • TNFα
  • diabetes
  • diabetic ketoacidosis
  • inflammation
  • priming
  • reactive oxygen species

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Cell Biology


Dive into the research topics of 'Novel neutrophil phenotypic signature in pediatric patients with type 1 diabetes and diabetic ketoacidosis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this