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J Diabetes Complications. 2009 Nov-Dec;23(6):387-93. doi: 10.1016/j.jdiacomp.2008.07.002. Epub 2008 Sep 2.

Plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 is associated with coronary artery calcium in Type 1 diabetes.

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  • 1Department of Epidemiology, Colorado School of Public Health, University of Colorado Denver, Denver, CO 80262, USA.



Elevated levels of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), the major inhibitor of fibrinolysis, is associated with coronary artery disease (CAD). This association may not be independent of factors related to insulin resistance (IR). Patients with Type 1 diabetes mellitus have increased CAD and an increase in sub-clinical CAD which develops earlier in life. It is not known if PAI-1 is associated with sub-clinical CAD in Type 1 diabetes or if this association is independent of IR.


Type 1 diabetes patients (n=560) and participants without diabetes (n=693) were assessed for coronary artery calcium (CAC), a surrogate for subclinical CAD, by electron-beam computed tomography. PAI-1 was associated with CAC in both Type 1 diabetes (OR=1.32, 95% CI=1.12-1.58) and non-diabetes (OR=1.34, 95% CI=1.13-1.58), after controlling for traditional risk factors not associated with IR. In Type 1 diabetes, the relationship between PAI-1 and CAC was strongest for younger participants (P=.02 for PAI-1-by-age interaction) after controlling for factors related to IR. PAI-1 was positively associated with CAC for Type 1 diabetes participants younger than 45 years of age.


PAI-1 levels are independently related to CAC in younger Type 1 diabetes participants. PAI-1 levels were not independently related to CAC in non-diabetes participants.

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