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S Igarashi, N Izumi, T Nagaoka, H Yokota, F Mori, A Yoshida; Plasma Nitric Oxide Levels in Diabetic Patients . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2002;43(13):554.
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Purpose: Nitric oxide (NO) is a vasoactive substance produced by endothelial cells and reflects endothelial function. Recently, it is suggested that abnormal NO metabolism contributes to the development or progression of diabetic microvascular complications. We evaluated the plasma nitrate (NO3-) levels, which are the stable metabolite of NO, in patients with diabetes and controls. Methods: Plasma NO3- levels were measured in 35 patients with diabetic retinopathy (DR group; mean age, 62 years), 21 patients with non-diabetic retinopathy (non-DR group; mean age, 61 years), and 20 normal controls (control group; mean age, 61 years), using an automated sample injector connected to an automated NO detector-HPLC system (ENO-20, Eicom, Japan). We investigated the changes in the plasma NO3- levels in the three groups. Results: The plasma NO3- levels were 34.6±19.3, 60.0±56.9, and 34.4±21.5 µM in the DR group, the non-DR group, and the control group, respectively. There was a statistically significant difference between the plasma NO3- levels in the non-DR and the control groups (p<0.05), and the non-DR and the DR groups (p<0.05); however, there was no statistically significant difference between the plasma NO3- levels in the DR and control groups. Conclusions: These results suggest that plasma NO levels increase in patients with non-DR, but decrease in patients with diabetic retinopathy.
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