Objective: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk prediction represents an increasing clinical challenge in the treatment of diabetes. We used a panel of vascular imaging, functional assessments, and biomarkers reflecting different disease mechanisms to identify clinically useful markers of risk for cardiovascular (CV) events in subjects with type 2 diabetes (T2D) with or without manifest CVD.
Research Design and Methods: The study cohort consisted of 936 subjects with T2D recruited at four European centers. Carotid intima-media thickness and plaque area, ankle-brachial pressure index, arterial stiffness, endothelial function, and circulating biomarkers were analyzed at baseline, and CV events were monitored during a 3-year follow-up period.
Results: The CV event rate in subjects with T2D was higher in those with (n = 440) than in those without (n = 496) manifest CVD at baseline (5.53 vs. 2.15/100 life-years, P < 0.0001). New CV events in subjects with T2D with manifest CVD were associated with higher baseline levels of inflammatory biomarkers (interleukin 6, chemokine ligand 3, pentraxin 3, and hs-CRP) and endothelial mitogens (hepatocyte growth factor and vascular endothelial growth factor A), whereas CV events in subjects with T2D without manifest CVD were associated with more severe baseline atherosclerosis (median carotid plaque area 30.4 mm 2 [16.1-92.2] vs. 19.5 mm 2 [9.5-40.5], P = 0.01). Conventional risk factors, as well as measurements of arterial stiffness and endothelial reactivity, were not associated with CV events.
Conclusions: Our observations demonstrate that markers of inflammation and endothelial stress reflect CV risk in subjects with T2D with manifest CVD, whereas the risk for CV events in subjects with T2D without manifest CVD is primarily related to the severity of atherosclerosis.
- Ankle Brachial Index
- Cardiovascular Diseases/blood
- Carotid Intima-Media Thickness
- Cohort Studies
- Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/blood
- Endothelial Cells/physiology
- Middle Aged
- Plaque, Atherosclerotic/blood
- Predictive Value of Tests
- Risk Assessment
- Risk Factors
- Vascular Stiffness/physiology