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Male sex adversely affects the phenotypic expression of diabetic heart disease

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journal contribution
posted on 19.01.2021, 08:43 by Lavanya Athithan, Amrit Chowdhary, Daniel Swarbrick, Gaurav S. Gulsin, Anvesha Singh, Nicholas Jex, Manali Jain, Jamal N. Khan, Matthew P. M. Graham-Brown, Joanne V. Wormleighton, Kelly S. Parke, Melanie Davies, Theodoros Karamitsos, Kieran Clarke, Stefan Neubauer, Eylem Levelt, Gerry P. McCann
Background:
Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is associated with an increased risk of heart failure (HF) and cardiovascular mortality. A large-scale meta-analysis on HF found that diabetes was more frequent in women than men, and diabetes appeared to have attenuated the otherwise protective effect of female sex on progression of cardiomyopathy. The exact underlying mechanisms for this remain unclear. Here, we aimed to determine the effect of sex on the phenotypic expression of diabetic heart disease in patients with T2D.

Methods:
A total of 62 male [mean age 44 ± 8 years, body mass index (BMI) 33 ± 5 kg/m2, mean HBA1c of 7.8 ± 1.8%] and 67 female (44 ± 10 years, BMI 35 ± 6 kg/m2, HBA1c 7.6 ± 1.2%) T2D patients on oral glucose-lowering treatment, and 16 male (48 ± 17 years, BMI 25 ± 3 kg/m2) and 14 female (50 ± 10 years, BMI 25 ± 4 kg/m2) controls were recruited. Left ventricular (LV) volumes, mass, function and deformation, and left atrial (LA) volumes and function were assessed using cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMR).

Results:
Participants in all groups were of similar age, and there were no significant differences in blood pressure (BP), diabetes duration or metabolic profile between the two diabetes groups. Concentric remodeling was present in both sexes (p < 0.0001), with greater degree of concentric hypertrophy in males (12%, p = 0.0015). Biplane LA ejection fraction (LAEF) (p = 0.038), peak systolic circumferential strain (p < 0.0001) and diastolic strain rates (p = 0.001) were significantly reduced in men compared with women with T2D. There were no significant differences in biplane LAEF, peak systolic circumferential strain and diastolic strain rates in women with T2D compared with female controls. Whereas in women with T2D, glycaemic control was linked to LV contractile function, there was no such relationship in men with T2D.

Conclusion:
Male sex adversely affects the phenotypic expression of diabetic heart disease. The striking differences in the cardiac phenotype between male and female patients with T2D promote awareness of gender-specific risk factors in search of treatment and prevention of diabetes-associated HF.

Condensed Abstract:
We aimed to determine the effect of sex on the phenotypic expression of diabetic heart disease in patients with T2D. While our findings support the notion that in T2D, male sex adversely affects the phenotypic expression of diabetic heart disease, this is in apparent conflict with the previous large-scale study showing diabetes attenuates the otherwise protective effect of female sex on progression of cardiomyopathy. Further longitudinal studies looking at gender differences in clinical outcomes in T2D patients are needed. These sex-related differences promote awareness of sex-specific risk factors in search of treatment and prevention of diabetes-associated HF.

Funding

The studies were supported by the Oxford Partnership Comprehensive Biomedical Research Centre and University of Leicester National Institute for Health Research Biomedical Research Centre. E.L. has received support from Wellcome Trust and NIHR. S.N. has received support from the Oxford BHF Centre of Research Excellence. G.P.M. has received support from NIHR. A.S. has received support from NIHR. G.S.G. has received support from BHF. M.D. has received support from NIHR.

History

Author affiliation

Cardiovascular Science; Leicester Diabetes Centre

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Published in

Therapeutic Advances in Endocrinology and Metabolism

Volume

11

Publisher

SAGE Publications (UK and US)

issn

2042-0188

Acceptance date

21/04/2020

Copyright date

2020

Available date

27/05/2020

Language

en