Increased erythrocyte- and platelet-derived microvesicles in newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes mellitus

Diab Vasc Dis Res. 2019 Sep;16(5):458-465. doi: 10.1177/1479164119844691. Epub 2019 May 3.


Aim: To investigate the thrombotic microenvironment in early stages of type 2 diabetes mellitus measuring platelet-derived, endothelial-derived and erythrocyte-derived microvesicles.

Methods: We recruited 50 newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes mellitus patients who did not receive glucose-lowering treatment except for metformin and 25 matched non-type 2 diabetes mellitus volunteers. Microvesicles were measured with flow cytometry, glycated haemoglobin with high-performance liquid chromatography and advanced glycation end products with enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.

Results: Type 2 diabetes mellitus patients showed significantly higher levels of platelet-derived microvesicles [195/μL (115-409) vs 110/μL (73-150), p = 0.001] and erythrocyte-derived microvesicles [26/μL (9-100) vs 9/μL (4-25), p = 0.007] compared to non-type 2 diabetes mellitus individuals. Platelet-derived microvesicles were positively associated with fasting blood glucose (p = 0.026) and glycated haemoglobin (p = 0.002). Erythrocyte-derived microvesicles were also positively associated with fasting blood glucose (p = 0.018) but not with glycated haemoglobin (p = 0.193). No significant association was observed between platelet-derived microvesicles (p = 0.126) or erythrocyte-derived microvesicles (p = 0.857) and advanced glycation end products. Erythrocyte-derived microvesicles predicted the presence of type 2 diabetes mellitus, independently of platelet-derived microvesicles.

Conclusion: In newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes mellitus, ongoing atherothrombosis is evident during the early stages as evidenced by increased microvesicles levels. Furthermore, the association with glycemic profile suggests that microvesicles represent not only a novel mechanism by which hyperglycemia amplifies thrombotic tendency in type 2 diabetes mellitus but also early markers of thrombosis highlighting the need for earlier management of hyperglycemia.

Keywords: Diabetes mellitus; glucose; glycated haemoglobin; microvesicles.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Blood Glucose / metabolism
  • Blood Platelets / metabolism
  • Blood Platelets / pathology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cell-Derived Microparticles / metabolism
  • Cell-Derived Microparticles / pathology*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / blood
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / diagnosis
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / pathology*
  • Erythrocytes / metabolism
  • Erythrocytes / pathology*
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin / metabolism
  • Glycation End Products, Advanced / blood
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Thrombosis


  • Biomarkers
  • Blood Glucose
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A
  • Glycation End Products, Advanced
  • hemoglobin A1c protein, human