Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease characterized by an overproduction of reactive oxygen species, which perturbs zinc metabolism and promotes the onset of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in diabetic patients. Metallothioneins (MT) are cysteine-rich metal-binding proteins which, by means of their antioxidant and zinc-buffering properties, might prevent the development of diabetic cardiovascular complications. A recent investigation shows that a polymorphism (+647 A/C) in the human MT-1A gene, affects the intracellular zinc ion release (iZnR) from the proteins and is associated with longevity in Italian population. The aim of the present study is to assess the involvement of +647 A/C and +1245 A/G MT1A polymorphisms with the susceptibility to type 2 diabetes (DM2) and cardiovascular complications. The study included 694 old individuals: 242 old healthy controls, 217 DM2 patients without clinical evidence of CVD (DNC) and 235 diabetic patients with diagnosis of CVD (DCVD). +647 A/C MT1A polymorphism, but not the second SNP, was associated with DM2. C allele carriers were more prevalent in DNC and DCVD patients than in control group (OR = 1.37, p = 0.034; OR = 1.54, p = 0.002, respectively). C+ carriers was associated with higher glycemia and glycosylated hemoglobin in DCVD patients, but not in DNC or control subjects. No differences in plasma zinc, but a modulation of MT levels and iZnR in PBMCs were observed in DCVD cohort when related to +647 A/C MT1A polymorphism. In summary, this work provides novel evidence on the association of the +647 A/C MT1A polymorphism with DM2. Moreover, C+ carriers in DCVD patients presented a worse glycemic control, a reduced iZnR and a higher MT levels, suggesting a possible role of MT in diabetic cardiovascular complications.
- Cardiovascular diseases
- MT polymorphism
- Type 2 diabetes
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism