Purpose of review: To summarize recent advancements in our understanding of the impact of dyslipidemia on microvascular complications in type 2 diabetes (T2D), with an emphasis on peripheral neuropathy and nephropathy.
Recent findings: Mounting evidence suggests that rigorous glycemic control only mitigates certain microvascular complications in T2D patients. Particularly, well regulated blood glucose levels only marginally improve peripheral neuropathy in the T2D setting. Dyslipidemia, an abnormal lipid profile, is emerging as a key factor in peripheral neuropathy. Furthermore, although glycemic control may prevent or slow nephropathy, recent developments demonstrate that dyslipidemia can also affect kidney outcomes in normoglycemic patients. Transcriptomic, epigenomic, and lipidomic investigations, as well as integrative approaches, are shedding light on potential pathomechanisms. These molecular studies are identifying possible targets for therapeutic intervention. Complementing molecular research, lifestyle interventions are on-going to assess whether dietary choices and/or exercise, weight-loss, or surgical interventions, such as bariatric surgery, can ameliorate peripheral neuropathy and nephropathy in T2D patients.
Summary: Dyslipidemia is an emerging mechanism in microvascular complications in T2D. Elucidating the molecular pathomechanisms may pinpoint potential lipid-centric treatments. Interventional studies of dietary changes, exercise, or weight-loss surgery may also positively impact these highly prevalent and morbid complications.
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