The renal tubular damage marker urinary N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase may be more closely associated with early detection of atherosclerosis than the glomerular damage marker albuminuria in patients with type 2 diabetes

So Ra Kim, Yong ho Lee, Sang Guk Lee, Eun Seok Kang, Bong Soo Cha, Byung Wan Lee

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Background: To determine the association between urinary N-acetyl-β-d-glucosaminidase (NAG), a marker of renal tubulopathy, and carotid intima-media thickness (IMT) and plaques in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) and to compare the predictive value of NAG versus albuminuria, a marker of renal glomerulopathy. Methods: A total of 343 participants were enrolled in this retrospective cross-sectional study. We recruited participants with T2D who were tested for blood glucose parameters, urinary NAG, and urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio (ACR) and had been checked for carotid ultrasonography. Results: We classified participants into a below-median urinary NAG group (Group I; n = 172) or an above-median group (Group II; n = 171). Mean, maximum, and mean of maximum carotid IMT and the proportion of patients with carotid plaques were significantly higher in Group II compared with Group I. In multiple linear regression analyses, high urinary NAG (Group II) was significantly associated with carotid IMT, independently of urinary ACR and other confounding factors. In terms of carotid plaques, both urinary NAG and ACR were significantly higher in participants with carotid plaques than in those without carotid plaques. After adjustment for confounding factors, both urinary NAG and ACR were significantly associated with the presence of carotid plaques. Conclusions: Elevated urinary NAG, a marker of renal tubular damage, was related to increased carotid IMT and the presence of carotid plaques in patients with T2D. Urinary NAG may be a more sensitive biomarker than urinary albumin for early detection of atherosclerosis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number16
JournalCardiovascular Diabetology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jan 26


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine

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