Lower Extremity Arterial Disease in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus: Metformin Inhibits Femoral Artery Ultrastructural Alterations as well as Vascular Tissue Levels of AGEs/ET-1 Axis-Mediated Inflammation and Modulation of Vascular iNOS and eNOS Expression

Ayed A. Shati, Amro Maarouf, Amal F. Dawood, Nervana M. Bayoumy, Youssef A. Alqahtani, Refaat A. Eid, Saeed M. Alqahtani, Mohamed Abd Ellatif, Bahjat Al-Ani, Alia Albawardi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lower extremity arterial disease (LEAD) is a major risk factor for amputation in diabetic patients. The advanced glycation end products (AGEs)/endothelin-1 (ET-1)/nitric oxide synthase (NOS) axis-mediated femoral artery injury with and without metformin has not been previously investigated. Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) was established in rats, with another group of rats treated for two weeks with 200 mg/kg metformin, before being induced with T2DM. The latter cohort were continued on metformin until they were sacrificed at week 12. Femoral artery injury was established in the diabetic group as demonstrated by substantial alterations to the femoral artery ultrastructure, which importantly were ameliorated by metformin. In addition, diabetes caused a significant (p < 0.0001) upregulation of vascular tissue levels of AGEs, ET-1, and iNOS, as well as high blood levels of glycated haemoglobin, TNF-α, and dyslipidemia. All of these parameters were also significantly inhibited by metformin. Moreover, metformin treatment augmented arterial eNOS expression which had been inhibited by diabetes progression. Furthermore, a significant correlation was observed between femoral artery endothelial tissue damage and glycemia, AGEs, ET-1, TNF-α, and dyslipidemia. Thus, in a rat model of T2DM-induced LEAD, an association between femoral artery tissue damage and the AGEs/ET-1/inflammation/NOS/dyslipidemia axis was demonstrated, with metformin treatment demonstrating beneficial vascular protective effects.

Original languageEnglish
Article number361
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2023


  • AGEs
  • diabetes
  • dyslipidemia
  • ET-1
  • femoral artery
  • inflammation
  • metformin
  • NOS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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