AIMS - Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a major complication of Type 2 diabetes mellitus. The renin-angiotensin system (RAS) and nitric oxide production are both important regulators of vascular function and blood pressure. Genes encoding proteins involved in these pathways are candidates for a contribution to CVD in diabetic patients. We have investigated variants of the angiotensinogen (AGT), angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), angiotensin type 1 receptor (AT1R) and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (NOS3) genes for association with subclinical measures of CVD in families with Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM).
METHODS - Atherosclerosis was measured by carotid intima-media thickness and calcification of the carotid and coronary arteries in 620 European Americans and 117 African Americans in the Diabetes Heart Study. Because of the role of these systems in blood pressure regulation, blood pressure was also investigated.
RESULTS - Compelling evidence of association was not detected with any of the SNPs with any outcome measures after adjustments for covariates despite sufficient power to detect relatively small differences in traits for specific genotype combinations.
CONCLUSIONS - Genetic variation of the RAS and NOS3 genes do not appear to strongly influence subclinical cardiovascular disease or blood pressure in this diabetic population.