Objective: To examine whether individuals with normal glucose tolerance (NGT), whose 1-h post-load plasma glucose is >or=155 mg/dl, or with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) have an increased carotid intima-media thickness (IMT), as compared with NGT individuals with 1-h post-load plasma <155 mg/dl.
Methods: Atherosclerosis risk factors, oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), and ultrasound manual measurement of IMT were analyzed in 400 non-diabetic Caucasians.
Results: As compared with individuals with a 1-h post-load plasma glucose <155 mg/dl, NGT individuals with a 1-h post-load plasma glucose >or=155 mg/dl exhibited higher hsCRP (2.0+/-1.5 vs. 1.5+/-1.0, P=0.008), and IMT (0.82+/-0.20 vs. 0.71+/-0.16; P=0.006), and lower insulin sensitivity (71+/-39 vs. 105+/-57; P<0.0001), and IGF-1 levels (214+/-88 vs. 176+/-49; P<0.03). No significant differences were observed in metabolic and cardiovascular risk factors between IGT and NGT subjects with a 1-h post-load glucose >or=155 mg/dl. Of the three glycemic parameters, 1-h and 2-h post-load glucose, but not fasting glucose, were significantly correlated with IMT. In a stepwise multivariate regression analysis in a model including age, gender, and a variety of atherosclerosis risk factors, the three variables that remained significantly associated with IMT were age (P<0.0001), BMI (P<0.0001), and 1-h post-load glucose (P=0.02) accounting for 20.2% of its variation.
Conclusions: NGT subjects with a 1-h post-load glucose >or=155 mg/dl have an atherogenic profile similar to IGT individuals. These data suggest that a cutoff point of 155 mg/dl for the 1-h post-load glucose during OGTT may be helpful in the identification of NGT subjects at increased risk for cardiovascular disease.