Context: Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is a hypercoagulable state. Tissue factor (TF) is the principal initiator of blood coagulation.
Objective: Our objective was to examine the effects of hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia on the TF pathway of blood coagulation in T2DM.
Design: Three study protocols were used: 1) acute correction of hyperglycemia (with iv insulin) followed by 24 h of euglycemia, 2) 24 h of selective hyperinsulinemia, and 3) 24 h of combined hyperinsulinemia and hyperglycemia.
Setting: The study took place at a clinical research center.
Study participants: Participants included 18 T2DM patients and 22 nondiabetic controls.
Results: Basal TF-procoagulant activity (TF-PCA), monocyte TF mRNA, plasma coagulation factor VII (FVIIc), and thrombin-anti-thrombin complexes were higher in T2DM than in nondiabetic controls, indicating a chronic procoagulant state. Acutely normalizing hyperglycemia over 2-4 h resulted in a small ( approximately 7%) but significant decline in TF-PCA with no further decline over 24 h. Raising insulin levels alone raised TF-PCA by 30%, whereas raising insulin and glucose levels together increased TF-PCA (by 80%), thrombin-anti-thrombin complexes, and prothrombin fragment 1.2. Plasma FVIIa and FVIIc declined with increases in TF-PCA.
Conclusion: We conclude that the combination of hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia, common in poorly controlled patients with T2DM, contributes to a procoagulant state that may predispose these patients to acute cardiovascular events.