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Semin Vasc Med. 2002 Feb;2(1):9-20.

The microvasculature in type 1 diabetes.

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  • 1Peninsula Medical School, Exeter, England.


Alterations in the microvasculature seen early in type 1 diabetes appear to be related to glycemic control. The later abnormalities occur primarily in patients with incipient or overt nephropathy and are likely to represent a more generalized vascular dysfunction as indicated by the increased cardiovascular risk in these groups. The mechanisms involved may be related to genetic susceptibility in combination with impaired hemorheology, dyslipidemia, hypertension, or the toxic effects of hyperglycemia. Many of these effects may relate to a common final pathway such as activation of PKC or increased oxidative stress. Therapeutic interventions to inhibit either PKC effects or decrease oxidative stress have been effective in reducing microangiopathy in diabetic animals. Vitamin C or E supplementation may improve vascular function in type 1 diabetes. The results of ongoing trials of PKC inhibitors are awaited with interest. Whether such interventions will influence the course of microangiopathy remains to be determined.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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