Plasma low-molecular weight fluorescence in type 1 diabetes mellitus

A. S. Januszewski, M. C. Thomas, S. J. Chung, C. S. Karschimkus, K. G. Rowley, C. Nelson, D. O'Neal, Z. Wang, J. D. Best, Alicia J. Jenkins

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Characteristic tissue fluorescence is associated with advanced glycation end product (AGE) accumulation in experimental diabetes models, but its utility in patients with type 1 diabetes remains to be established. We studied 148 patients with type 1 diabetes and 77 healthy age-matched control subjects. Low-molecular weight (LMW) fluorophore levels were estimated in plasma samples obtained after an overnight fast. Intra- and interassay coefficients of variation were 4.7% and 6.4%, respectively. LMW fluorophore levels were significantly higher in patients with diabetes than in control subjects (6.3 ± 0.6 vs. 4.1 ± 0.3; P = 0.007). However, all of this difference came from patients with microvascular complications (n = 67, 7.5 ± 1.3). There was no difference in LMW fluorescence between complication-free patients (4.4 ± 0.2) and control subjects (P > 0.05). On multivariate analysis, LMW fluorophores correlated with measures of renal function (P < 0.05) but not with diabetes per se. In addition, there was no correlation between LMW fluorophores and the markers of oxidative stress or systemic inflammation. Longitudinal and interventional studies are required to determine whether the association between LMW fluorophores and nephropathy is cause or effect.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)655-661
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Advanced glycation end products
  • Fluorophores
  • Renal function
  • Type 1 diabetes

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