Weight problems and type 2 diabetes are related to vascular stiffening and the progress of cardiovascular disease. Overweight and diabetic premenopausal females are mostly at risk — even more than men of the same age who’ve similar health problems. A study by University of Missouri School of Medicine researchers observed that a diabetes medication provided defense towards arterial stiffness in obese female mice, a discovery that can have future implications for sickness prevention in people.
According to Vincent DeMarco, Ph.D., a research associate professor of endocrinology at the MU School of Medicine and lead author of the study, The widespread overconsumption of a western diet high in fats and refined sugars is a contributing factor to the epidemic of obesity and diabetes around the world. Our previous studies showed that young female mice consuming a mostly western diet not only gained weight, but also exhibited arterial stiffening consistent with obese premenopausal women. Our current study sought to understand what effects, if any, the diabetes medication linagliptin had on preventing vascular stiffness.
Linagliptin is a medication prescribed to lower blood glucose in patients with Type 2 diabetes. The treatment works by blocking off the enzyme dipeptidyl peptidase-4, or DPP-four. Earlier studies have shown that the DPP-4 inhibitor additionally appeared to prevent vascular inflammation and oxidative stress — conditions related to arterial stiffening.
DeMarco’s group located 34 female mice that have been fed both normal food regimen or a simulated western diet for four months. The other group of mice have been fed a western food regimen containing a low dose of linagliptin. The team used an ultrasound approach designed specifically for mice to evaluate stiffness of the aorta — the important artery that supplies blood to the circulatory system.
De Marco said, The mice fed a western diet without receiving linagliptin gained weight and developed aortic stiffness. However, a big surprise to us was an almost total prevention of aortic stiffening in the mice that were fed the western diet along with linagliptin, even though this group gained as much weight as the other mice.
DeMarco cautions that extra research is required to assess if linagliptin might be used as a therapeutic instrument at some point to prevent aortic stiffening and the cardiovascular dangers related to obesity and diabetes. Moreover, Linagliptin, like other DPP-four inhibitors, can be costly without insurance coverage.
He further added, Based on the results of our study, it is tempting to speculate that linagliptin could target arterial stiffness and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. However, results from clinical trials already in progress will be needed to determine what, if any, future role linagliptin could play in the management of obesity-related cardiovascular disease.
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