Objective: Growth factor and cell-based angiogenesis are attractive therapeutic options for diabetic patients with end-stage coronary disease. Reduced collateral vessel formation observed in diabetes is associated with increased expression of anti-angiogenic proteins, angiostatin and endostatin. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of insulin treatment on the diabetic angiogenic response to chronic myocardial ischemia. Methods: Yucatan miniswine were treated with alloxan (pancreatic β-cell specific toxin, 150 mg/kg) and divided into two groups. In the diabetic group (DM, n = 8), blood glucose levels were kept greater than 250 mg/dL, and in the insulin-treated group (IDM, n = 6), intramuscular insulin was administered daily to keep blood glucose less than 150 mg/dL. A third group of age-matched swine served as nondiabetic controls (ND; n = 8). Eight weeks later, all animals underwent circumflex artery ameroid constrictor placement to induce chronic ischemia. Myocardial perfusion was assessed at 3 and 7 weeks after ameroid placement using microspheres. Microvascular function, capillary density, and myocardial expression of anti-angiogenic mediators were evaluated. Results: Diabetic animals exhibited significant impairments in endothelium-dependent microvessel relaxation to adenosine diphosphate and substance P, which were reversed in insulin-treated animals. Collateral-dependent perfusion in the ischemic circumflex territory, which was profoundly reduced in diabetic animals (-0.18 ± 0.02 vs +0.23 ± 0.07 mL · min-1 · g-1; P < .001), improved significantly with insulin treatment (0.12 ± 0.05 mL · min-1 · g-1; P < .01). Myocardial expression of anti-angiogenic proteins, angiostatin and endostatin, showing a 4.3- and 3.6-fold increase in diabetic animals respectively (both P < .01 vs ND), was markedly reduced in insulin-treated animals (2.3- and 1.8-fold vs ND; both P < .01). Conclusions: Insulin treatment successfully reversed diabetic coronary endothelial dysfunction and significantly improved the endogenous angiogenic response. These pro-angiogenic effects may be mediated through downregulation of anti-angiogenic mediators. Insulin therapy appears to be a promising modality to enhance the angiogenic response in diabetic patients.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine