In the following study, researchers found that those with COPD were nearly twice as likely to develop type 2 diabetes as those without COPD. The researchers suggest that inflammation may explain this association. They state, "Inflammation plays a key role in chronic obsructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma. Increasing evidence points toward a role of inflammation in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes." Homocysteine is the powerful inflammatory component that both COPD and type 2 diabetes share. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15451919
The following study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, concluded that, “In this large cohort of patients with type 2 diabetes, plasma homocysteine was a strong and independent risk factor for CHD (coronary heart disease) events,” (Soinio, 2004).
Elevated Plasma Homocysteine Level Is an Independent Predictor of Coronary Heart Disease Events in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
Background: High plasma homocysteine level has been associated with increased risk for coronary heart disease (CHD) events in nondiabetic individuals, especially in those with previously diagnosed CHD. In persons with type 2 diabetes mellitus, the association between homocysteine level and cardiovascular disease may be stronger than that in nondiabetic individuals, but no large prospective studies have examined the relationship between homocysteine level and CHD mortality in persons with type 2 diabetes.
Objective: To investigate whether moderately elevated plasma homocysteine levels are independently related to increased incidence of fatal and nonfatal CHD events in persons with type 2 diabetes.
Setting: Finnish sample of patients with type 2 diabetes.
Patients: 462 men and 368 women who were 45 to 64 years of age at baseline.
Conclusions: In this large cohort of patients with type 2 diabetes, plasma homocysteine level was a strong and independent risk factor for CHD events.
In the following study of 65 patients with type 2 diabetes, elevated levels of homocysteine were found to be independently associated with the prevalence of peripheral neuropathy. The authors suggested that this association could be explained either by direct cytotoxic effects on nerve function, or by small vessel occlusions caused by endothelial damage. This results in a loss of blood supply to nerve fibers, a pathogenetic mechanism of peripheral neuropathy.
Relation Between Homocysteinaemia and Diabetic Neuropathy in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
Ambrosch, A., J. Dierkes, R. Lobmann, W. Kühne, W. König, C. Luley, H. Lehnert. 2001.
Diabet Med. 18(3):185-92.
Conclusion: The data indicate that homocysteine is independently associated with the prevalence of diabetic neuropathy in a collective of Type 2 diabetic patients. A larger, prospective study would be desirable to clarify the role of homocysteine in the pathogenesis of diabetic neuropathy.