There is no correlation between the consumption of hydrolyzed protein formula or a cow's milk-based formula and the development of diabetes-associated autoantibodies in children younger than seven.
This is according to a worldwide research study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
The Trial to Reduce Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus in the Genetically at Risk (TRIGR) study, which examines possible reduction in autoantibodies associated with type 1 diabetes, tracked children genetically predisposed to type 1 diabetes for seven years.
Anita Nucci, assistant professor of nutrition at Georgia State University, is the U.S. coordinator and the North America nutrition coordinator for TRIGR. She notes that while there is no correlation between cow's milk protein and the autoantibodies that result in type 1 diabetes, the second end-point of the TRIGR study is the development of type 1 diabetes by 10 years of age.
"The NIH's continued support validates the possibility the connection with cow's milk protein and type 1 diabetes may appear a little later in the lives of children who live outside Finland or that hydrolyzed formula affects the rate of progression of autoimmunity to clinical diabetes in high-risk children," says Nucci.
Some genetic subgroups may carry a higher risk for diabetes and cow's milk proteins. Scandinavia is the region with the highest incidence of type 1 diabetes in the world.