The role of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibition with ramipril on mesenteric vascular hypertrophy and urinary albumin excretion was explored in a normotensive model of experimental diabetes. Serial measurements of albuminuria were performed in Sprague-Dawley control, diabetic rats, and diabetic rats treated with ramipril. Over 24 weeks, urinary albumin excretion showed a continuous rise in the untreated diabetic rats. Ramipril prevented the increase in albuminuria over the whole study period. After 6 months, animals were perfused with glutaraldehyde and sacrificed for measurement of mesenteric vessel wall/lumen ratio and kidney weight. Diabetes was associated with increased mesenteric wall/lumen ratio and kidney weight. ACE inhibition, despite no effect on glycemic control, attenuated mesenteric vascular hypertrophy but did not decrease kidney weight. In addition to the well-described renoprotective effects of ACE inhibition in diabetes, this class of agents may have a favorable effect on diabetic vascular disease.