Colds and other infections in the first six months of life may boost the odds of a child developing type 1 diabetes by nearly 20 percent, new research suggests.
The suspicion that infections play a role in the development of type 1 diabetes isn’t new. Experts have long suspected that viral infections may trigger the disease.
“This study really just bolsters the idea of early life events being crucial for the development of the immune system,” said Jessica Dunne, director of discovery research for JDRF (formerly the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation). JDRF provided some of the funding for the new study.
“But the jury is still out,” she added. And the study authors themselves noted that their study can’t prove a cause-and-effect relationship.