Introduction: To determine its utility as a biomarker, this study explores the diagnostic usefulness of Galectin-3 (Gal3), in subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) and their first-degree relatives (FDR).

Methods: Gal3, glucose (FPG) and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein(hs-CRP) were measured in 217 T2D patients and 226 FDR. Clinical data were recorded and subjects were classified using homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR). FDR were classified as normal, prediabetes or diabetic using HbA1c. T2D were classified by presence or absence of retinopathy, neuropathy (autonomic (AN) and sensory (SN) and as normo- (NAO) or micro-albuminuric (MIA)) using urine microalbumin to creatinine ratio. Binary logistic regression with determination of the Odds Ratio (OR) analyses were used to evaluate associations with T2D complications. Receiver-Operating Characteristic Curve (ROC) analysis was used to evaluate diagnostic utility of Gal3.

Results: Gal3 showed significant (p<0.05) correlations with waist circumference (r=0.21), HbA1c (r= 0.33); glucose (r=0.21) and hs-CRP (r=0.2). In FDR, mean Gal3 levels increased stepwise with worsening glucose tolerance - normal (7.6ng/ml); prediabetes (8.1ng/ml) and diabetes (9.1 ng/ml) and subjects with HOMA-IR >2 had significantly higher mean Gal 3 than subjects with HOMA-IR < 2 (10.2 vs. 9.3 ng/ml). In FDR, ROC analysis showed that Gal3 cut-off value of 8.7 ng/ml has 77% sensitivity and 67% specificity for detection of diabetes. In T2D, binary logistic regression analysis showed Gal3 was significantly associated with hypertension (HT), MIA, AN, SN and retinopathy. ROC analysis showed that Gal3 significantly detects HT, MIA, AS and SN. Gal3 >9.7 ng/ml was associated with presence of T2D complications with sensitivity and specificity >70%.

Conclusions: Gal3 is significantly associated with diabetes in FDR and is a strong predictor of associated complications in subjects with T2D.


N.A. Abdella: None. O.A. Mojiminiyi: None.


Kuwait Foundation for the Advancement of Science (2011-1302-01)

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