Health News: Diabetes Exacerbates Symptoms in Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats

Hypertension and diabetes are known risk factors for retinal microvascular damage. However, the combined effects of diabetes with early and established stages of hypertension on retinal microvascular degeneration remain incompletely understood. A study published in Molecular Vision found that male spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) were compared to SHRs with streptozotocin-induced diabetes (SHR+D) for six or ten weeks. Hypertension alone (the SHR group) or in combination with diabetes (the SHR + D Group) for six weeks induced additive increases in total retinal cell death, compared to controls.

This increase was associated with significant increases in molecules associated with cell death, inflammation, and sepsis. The study showed that combining diabetes and hypertension-potentiated retinal oxidative/inflammatory stress accelerated retinal-cell death and acellular capillary formation.

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