• Research Name
    The Young-Onset Diabetes in Sub-Saharan Africa (YODA).
  • RESEARCH YEAR 2019 - 2021


The life expectancy of type 1 diabetic patients (T1D) in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) is very low. Frequent interruptions in insulin supply, among other factors, is probably the main reason. Although there are a number of programs aimed at improving insulin supply, unfortunately they cover only a portion of the population and are often limited to young people (<25 years). Clinical observations in most sub-Saharan African countries show that the survival of these patients is closely linked to their ability to purchase insulin. Among these type 1 diabetic patients, there is a group capable of surviving long periods without insulin, so they may not suffer from the “classic” type 1 diabetes with near absolute insulin deficiency commonly observed.


This study aims to determine the relationship between the survival of patients with type 1 diabetes in Cameroonian populations, endogenous insulin secretion and accessibility to insulin treatment. Futhermore, this study will characterize type 1 diabetes and establish a prospective cohort to aid future studies in characterizing and optimizing the treatment of type 1 diabetes in Sub-Saharan Africa and Cameroon in particular.

Study Design

This is a multicenter cross-sectional study conducted in Cameroon and Uganda, with a planned total recruitment of 300 participants in Cameroon. Participants underwent a medical examination with assessment of socioeconomic status and determination of circulating postprandial C-peptide concentrations, islet autoantibodies and genetic susceptibility to type 1 diabetes. Next, a subset of 100 participants underwent a mixed meal tolerance test to assess pancreatic beta cell secretion. Finally, follow-up of type 1 diabetic patients at Changing Diabetes in Children (CDiC) clinics across the country assessed their survival.


Katte, J. C., McDonald, T. J., Sobngwi, E., & Jones, A. G. (2023). The phenotype of type 1 diabetes in sub-Saharan Africa. Frontiers in Public Health11, 1014626. [Read more]