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1.  Circulating levels of IL-18 are significantly influenced by the IL-18 +183 A/G polymorphism in coronary artery disease patients with diabetes type 2 and the metabolic syndrome: an Observational Study 
Increased IL-18 serum levels have been associated with diabetes type 2, metabolic syndrome and the severity of atherosclerosis. The present study investigated the presence and influence of IL-18 genetic variants on gene- and protein expression in stable coronary artery disease (CAD) patients.
The +183 A/G (rs 5744292), -137 G/C (rs 187238) and -607 C/A (rs 1946518) polymorphisms were determined in 1001 patients with angiographically verified stable CAD, and in 204 healthy controls. IL-18 gene-expression was measured in circulating leukocytes in 240 randomly selected patients. Circulating IL-18 and IL-18 binding protein levels were measured immunologically in all patients.
The +183 G-allele associated significantly with lower serum levels of IL-18 (p = 0.002, adjusted for age, glucose, body mass index and gender) and a 1.13- fold higher IL-18 gene-expression (p = 0.010). No influence was observed for the -137 G/C and -607 C/A polymorphisms. The IL-18 binding protein levels were not influenced by IL-18 genotypes. IL-18 levels were significantly higher in men as compared to women, and in patients with diabetes type 2 and metabolic syndrome compared to those without (p ≤ 0.001, all). The reduction in IL-18 levels according to the +183 G-allele was 3-4 fold more pronounced in diabetes and metabolic syndrome as compared to unaffected patients.
Finally, the +183 AA genotype was more frequent in patients with hypertension (p = 0.042, adjusted for age, body mass index and gender).
The reduction in serum IL-18 levels across increasing numbers of +183G-alleles was especially apparent in patient with diabetes type 2 and metabolic syndrome, suggesting a beneficial GG genotype in relation to cardiovascular outcome in these patients.
Clinical Trial Registration Number NCT00222261
PMCID: PMC3295692  PMID: 22141572
Single nucleotide polymorphisms; IL-18 mRNA; diabetes type 2; metabolic syndrome; hypertension
2.  Increased levels of CRP and MCP-1 are associated with previously unknown abnormal glucose regulation in patients with acute STEMI: a cohort study 
Inflammation plays an important role in the pathophysiology of both atherosclerosis and type 2 diabetes and some inflammatory markers may also predict the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The aims of the present study were to assess a potential association between circulating levels of inflammatory markers and hyperglycaemia measured during an acute ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) in patients without known diabetes, and to determine whether circulating levels of inflammatory markers measured early after an acute STEMI, were associated with the presence of abnormal glucose regulation classified by an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) at three-month follow-up in the same cohort.
Inflammatory markers were measured in fasting blood samples from 201 stable patients at a median time of 16.5 hours after a primary percutanous coronary intervention (PCI). Three months later the patients performed a standardised OGTT. The term abnormal glucose regulation was defined as the sum of the three pathological glucose categories classified according to the WHO criteria (patients with abnormal glucose regulation, n = 50).
No association was found between inflammatory markers and hyperglycaemia measured during the acute STEMI. However, the levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) measured in-hospital were higher in patients classified three months later as having abnormal compared to normal glucose regulation (p = 0.031 and p = 0.016, respectively). High levels of CRP (≥ 75 percentiles (33.13 mg/L)) and MCP-1 (≥ 25 percentiles (190 ug/mL)) were associated with abnormal glucose regulation with an adjusted OR of 3.2 (95% CI 1.5, 6.8) and 7.6 (95% CI 1.7, 34.2), respectively.
Elevated levels of CRP and MCP-1 measured in patients early after an acute STEMI were associated with abnormal glucose regulation classified by an OGTT at three-month follow-up. No significant associations were observed between inflammatory markers and hyperglycaemia measured during the acute STEMI.
PMCID: PMC2940874  PMID: 20809989
3.  The role of interleukin-18 in the metabolic syndrome 
The metabolic syndrome is thought to be associated with a chronic low-grade inflammation, and a growing body of evidence suggests that interleukin-18 (IL-18) might be closely related to the metabolic syndrome and its consequences. Circulating levels of IL-18 have been reported to be elevated in subjects with the metabolic syndrome, to be closely associated with the components of the syndrome, to predict cardiovascular events and mortality in populations with the metabolic syndrome and to precede the development of type 2 diabetes. IL-18 is found in the unstable atherosclerotic plaque, in adipose tissue and in muscle tissue, and is subject to several regulatory steps including cleavage by caspase-1, inactivation by IL-18 binding protein and the influence of other cytokines in modulating its interaction with the IL-18 receptor. The purpose of this review is to outline the role of IL-18 in the metabolic syndrome, with particular emphasis on cardiovascular risk and the potential effect of life style interventions.
PMCID: PMC2858122  PMID: 20331890
4.  Abnormal glucose regulation in patients with acute ST- elevation myocardial infarction-a cohort study on 224 patients 
A high prevalence of impaired glucose tolerance and unknown type 2-diabetes in patients with coronary heart disease and no previous diagnosis of diabetes have been reported. The aims of the present study were to investigate the prevalence of abnormal glucose regulation (AGR) 3 months after an acute ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI) in patients without known glucometabolic disturbance, to evaluate the reliability of a 75-g oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) performed very early after an acute STEMI to predict the presence of AGR at 3 months, and to study other potential predictors measured in-hospital for AGR at 3 months.
This was an observational cohort study prospectively enrolling 224 STEMI patients treated with primary PCI. An OGTT was performed very early after an acute STEMI and was repeated in 200 patients after 3 months. We summarised the exact agreement observed, and assessed the observed reproducibility of the OGTTs performed in-hospital and at follow up. The patients were classified into glucometabolic categories defined according to the World Health Organisation criteria. AGR was defined as the sum of impaired fasting glucose, impaired glucose tolerance and type 2-diabetes.
The prevalence of AGR at three months was 24.9% (95% CI 19.1, 31.4%), reduced from 46.9% (95% CI 40.2, 53.6) when measured in-hospital. Only, 108 of 201 (54%) patients remained in the same glucometabolic category after a repeated OGTT. High levels of HbA1c and admission plasma glucose in-hospital significantly predicted AGR at 3 months (p < 0.001, p = 0.040, respectively), and fasting plasma glucose was predictive when patients with large myocardial infarction were excluded (p < 0.001).
The prevalence of AGR in STEMI patients was lower than expected. HbA1c, admission plasma glucose and fasting plasma glucose measured in-hospital seem to be useful as early markers of longstanding glucometabolic disturbance. An OGTT performed very early after a STEMI did not provide reliable information on long-term glucometabolic state and should probably not be recommended.
PMCID: PMC2646717  PMID: 19183453

Results 1-4 (4)