University of Oulu

Saunajoki A, Auvinen J, Saarela V, Uusitalo J-J, Leiviskä I, Keinänen-Kiukaanniemi S, et al. (2020) Association of glucose metabolism and retinopathy signs in non-diabetic individuals in midlife—The Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966 study. PLoS ONE 15(10): e0240983.

Association of glucose metabolism and retinopathy signs in non-diabetic individuals in midlife : the Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1966 study

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Author: Saunajoki, Anni1; Auvinen, Juha1,2,3; Saarela, Ville2,4;
Organizations: 1Center for Life Course Health Research, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
2Medical Research Center Oulu, Oulu University Hospital and University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
3Healthcare and Social Services of Oulunkaari, Ii, Finland
4PEDEGO Research Unit, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
5Healthcare and Social Services of Selänne, Pyhäjärvi, Finland
6Healthcare and Social Services of City of Oulu, Oulu, Finland
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.2 MB)
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Language: English
Published: Public Library of Science, 2020
Publish Date: 2021-02-15


Diabetic retinopathy is a microvascular complication of hyperglycaemia. Little is known about the association of glucose metabolism and retinopathy signs in the non-diabetic middle-aged population. We studied prevalence of retinopathy in a subsample of Northern Finland Birth Cohort study (NFBC1966) of 1809 subjects, at 47 years of age, without previously diagnosed type 2 diabetes and/or blood pressure-lowering medication. All participants underwent clinical evaluations including an oral glucose tolerance test (glucose and insulin values measured at 0, 30, 60 and 120 min) and HbA1c. The retinopathy signs were diagnosed by fundus photographs and classified according to the Eurodiab classification scheme. The overall prevalence of newly diagnosed retinopathy was 1.4%. The retinopathy signs were significantly associated with increased 30 min, 1-h and 2-h glucose levels and 2-h insulin level in an OGTT. After adjustment with systolic blood pressure, only 30 min glucose, 1-h glucose and 2-h insulin levels were associated with retinopathy signs. Our findings show the potential role of 30 min and 1-h post-load glucose and 2-h insulin levels as risk factors for retinopathy lesions among the participants without previously diagnosed diabetes or hypertensive medication.

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Series: PLoS one
ISSN: 1932-6203
ISSN-E: 1932-6203
ISSN-L: 1932-6203
Volume: 15
Issue: 10
Article number: e0240983
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0240983
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 3121 General medicine, internal medicine and other clinical medicine
Funding: This research was supported by State Research Financing of the Expert Responsibility area of Oulu. NFBC1966 received financial support from University of Oulu Grant no. 24000692, Oulu University Hospital Grant no. 24301140, ERDF European Regional Development Fund Grant no. 539/2010 A31592. The study was supported by grants from Emil Aaltonen Foundation, Orion Research Foundation sr and Oulu Medical Research Foundation. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
Copyright information: © 2020 Saunajoki et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.