Objectives: The aim of this study was to assess the effect of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition with enalapril on forearm endothelial function in subjects with type II diabetes mellitus.
Background: Endothelial function is depressed in the presence of conventional risk factors for atherosclerosis, and various therapies, such as lipid-lowering therapy in hypercholesterolemia, can improve endothelial-mediated vasodilation. ACE inhibition has improved such function in several conditions including type I diabetes, but there is no evidence for a beneficial effect in type II diabetes.
Methods: The influence of enalapril (10 mg twice daily for 4 weeks) on endothelium-dependent and -independent vasodilator function was determined in 10 type II diabetic subjects using a double-blinded placebo-controlled crossover protocol. Forearm blood flow was measured using strain-gage plethysmography and graded intrabrachial infusion of acetylcholine (ACh), N(G)-monomethyl-L-arginine (LNMMA) and sodium nitroprusside (SNP).
Results: Enalapril increased the response to the endothelium-dependent vasodilator, ACh (p < 0.02) and the vasoconstrictor response to the nitric oxide (NO) synthase inhibitor, LNMMA (p < 0.002). No difference was evident in the response to SNP.
Conclusions: In type II diabetic subjects without evidence of vascular disease, the ACE inhibitor enalapril improved stimulated and basal NO-dependent endothelial function. The study extends the spectrum of beneficial effects demonstrated to result from ACE inhibition in diabetes.