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Cell Metab. 2013 May 7;17(5):695-708. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2013.04.001.

Hyperglycemia promotes myelopoiesis and impairs the resolution of atherosclerosis.

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Division of Preventive Medicine and Nutrition, Department of Medicine, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.


Diabetes is a major risk factor for atherosclerosis. Although atherosclerosis is initiated by deposition of cholesterol-rich lipoproteins in the artery wall, the entry of inflammatory leukocytes into lesions fuels disease progression and impairs resolution. We show that diabetic mice have increased numbers of circulating neutrophils and Ly6-C(hi) monocytes, reflecting hyperglycemia-induced proliferation and expansion of bone marrow myeloid progenitors and release of monocytes into the circulation. Increased neutrophil production of S100A8/S100A9, and its subsequent interaction with the receptor for advanced glycation end products on common myeloid progenitor cells, leads to enhanced myelopoiesis. Treatment of hyperglycemia reduces monocytosis, entry of monocytes into atherosclerotic lesions, and promotes regression. In patients with type 1 diabetes, plasma S100A8/S100A9 levels correlate with leukocyte counts and coronary artery disease. Thus, hyperglycemia drives myelopoiesis and promotes atherogenesis in diabetes.

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