We examined whether the ACE gene insertion/deletion (I/D) polymorphism modulates renal disease progression in IDDM and how ACE inhibitors influence this relationship. The EURODIAB Controlled Trial of Lisinopril in IDDM is a multicenter randomized placebo-controlled trial in 530 nonhypertensive, mainly normoalbuminuric IDDM patients aged 20-59 years. Albumin excretion rate (AER) was measured every 6 months for 2 years. Genotype distribution was 15% II, 58% ID, and 27% DD. Between genotypes, there were no differences in baseline characteristics or in changes in blood pressure and glycemic control throughout the trial. There was a significant interaction between the II and DD genotype groups and treatment on change in AER (P = 0.05). Patients with the II genotype showed the fastest rate of AER progression on placebo but had an enhanced response to lisinopril. AER at 2 years (adjusted for baseline AER) was 51.3% lower on lisinopril than placebo in the II genotype patients (95% CI, 15.7 to 71.8; P = 0.01), 14.8% in the ID group (-7.8 to 32.7; P = 0.2), and 7.7% in the DD group (-36.6 to 37.6; P = 0.7). Absolute differences in AER between placebo and lisinopril at 2 years were 8.1, 1.7, and 0.8 microg/min in the II, ID, and DD groups, respectively. The significant beneficial effect of lisinopril on AER in the II group persisted when adjusted for center, blood pressure, and glycemic control, and also for diastolic blood pressure at 1 month into the study. Progression from normoalbuminuria to microalbuminuria (lisinopril versus placebo) was 0.27 (0.03-2.26; P = 0.2) in the II group, and 1.30 (0.33-5.17; P = 0.7) in the DD group (P = 0.6 for interaction). Knowledge of ACE genotype may be of value in determining the likely impact of ACE inhibitor treatment.

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