Sara Mankoc Ramus and Danijel Petrovic* Pages 16 - 24 ( 9 )
Atherosclerosis and its cardiovascular complications are the main cause of death in diabetic patients. Patients with diabetes mellitus have a greater than 10-fold risk of cardiovascular disease in their lifetime. The carotid Intima-Media Thickness (cIMT), a surrogate marker for the presence and progression of atherosclerosis, predicts future cardiovascular events in asymptomatic subjects with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM). This review focuses on genetic variants that contribute to the pathobiology of subclinical atherosclerosis in the setting of T2DM. Specifically, we devoted our attention to wellstudied genes selected for their relevance for atherosclerosis. These include: The Renin-Angiotensin- Aldosterone System (RAAS), Apolipoprotein E (ApoE), Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase (MTHFR) and pro-inflammatory genes.
The ever-growing availability of advanced genotyping technologies has made Genome-Wide Association Studies (GWAS) possible. Although several bioinformatics tools have been developed to manage and interpret the huge amounts of data produced, there has been limited success in the many attempts to uncover the biological meaning of the novel susceptibility loci for atherosclerosis.
Type 2 diabetes mellitus, subclinical atherosclerosis, carotid intima-media thickness, genetic risk factors, RAAS, GWAS.
Institute of Histology and Embryology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Institute of Histology and Embryology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Ljubljana, Ljubljana