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Curr Diab Rep. 2011 Jun;11(3):211-7. doi: 10.1007/s11892-011-0186-y.

Perivascular adipose tissue and its role in type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

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Department of Physiology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Obesity is associated with insulin resistance, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, but the mechanisms underlying these associations are incompletely understood. Microvascular dysfunction may play an important role in the pathogenesis of both insulin resistance and hypertension in obesity. Adipose tissue-derived substances (adipokines) and especially inflammatory products of adipose tissue control insulin sensitivity and vascular function. In the past years, adipose tissue associated with the vasculature, or perivascular adipose tissue (PAT), has been shown to produce a variety of adipokines that contribute to regulation of vascular tone and local inflammation. This review describes our current understanding of the mechanisms linking perivascular adipose tissue to vascular function, inflammation, and insulin resistance. Furthermore, we will discuss mechanisms controlling the quantity and adipokines secretion by PAT.

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