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Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis. 2009 Dec;19(11):789-96. doi: 10.1016/j.numecd.2009.01.005. Epub 2009 Apr 5.

Fibrinogen kinetics and protein turnover in hypertension: Effects of insulin.

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  • 1Metabolism Division, Policlinico Universitario, via Giustiniani 2, 35128 Padova, Italy.



Hyperfibrinogenemia, a cardiovascular risk factor, is frequent in hypertension and largely unexplained. In this study, we measured fibrinogen production and whole-body protein turnover under both basal and hyperinsulinemic states, in hypertensive [H] and control [C] subjects, using a leucine stable isotope tracer and precursor-product relationships.


Since hypertension is often a feature of the "metabolic", insulin resistance syndrome, which in turn affects both fibrinogen kinetics and whole-body protein turnover, we selected hypertensive subjects without the metabolic syndrome. Following basal measurements, an euglycemic, approximately euaminoacidemic, hyperinsulinemic clamp was performed, with plasma insulin raised to 700-900 pmol/L. In H, rates of the fractional and absolute synthesis (FSR and ASR, respectively) of fibrinogen were 30%-40% greater (p<0.05 or less) than in C in both states, whereas leucine turnover was normal. Hyperinsulinemia did not modify fibrinogen synthesis in either group with respect to baseline, whereas it suppressed leucine appearance from endogenous proteolysis by approximately 40% to same extent in both groups. Amino acid clearance was similar in both the H and C subjects. In H, the insulin-mediated glucose disposal (M) was approximately 25% lower, (although insignificantly) than in controls, showing no overall insulin resistance. There was an inverse correlation between M and fibrinogen FSR during the clamp.


In essential hypertension fibrinogen production is increased, is not further stimulated by insulin, and is inversely related to insulin sensitivity at high-physiological insulin concentrations. Amino acid disposal and basal as well as insulin-responsive protein degradation rates are instead normal.

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