R4GH is proud to introduce Mr. Jonathan Nsamba who was awarded the R4GH small research grant in 2020 and 2021 for his project entitled:

Association between insulin, body composition and muscular health: A study among children and adolescents diagnosed with type 1 diabetes mellitus in Uganda


Weight gain has been reported as an intractable effect of insulin use among patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM). In recent years, there has even been a surging rise of the ailment among children and adolescents in Uganda. Patients with T1DM have a higher preponderance of weight gain due to insulin-induced lipogenic and anti-catabolic effects on lipids and proteins respectively. However, it is unclear whether the observed weight gain among T1DM patients on insulin hormonal therapy reflects increases in fat mass or fat-free mass compartments of the body. 

The ongoing research project, therefore, seeks to narrow the knowledge gap by exploring the cardio-metabolic risk profiles of diabetic children and adolescents in Uganda. This study team is collecting data about the body composition, handgrip strength, biochemical, dietary, nutrition status and physical activity of T1DM patients. These parameters will be compared against closely matched age and sex-matched controls. The authors hope to understand how the scientific community can harness insulin used for glycaemic control but optimise resulting weight and body composition changes. Furthermore, the study seeks to understand the perceptions of newly diagnosed young T1DM children and adolescents about their disease status, barriers and facilitators to self-care. This is being accomplished through in-depth interviews by asking patients carefully selected questions.