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Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes

Join Brian Rodrigues, PhD as he speaks to the correlation or Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes. 5-6% of Canadians are currently diagnosed with diabetes. In people with diabetes, inadequate pharmaceutical management predisposes the patient to heart failure, which is the leading cause of diabetes related deaths. One instigator for this cardiac dysfunction is change in fuel utilization by the heart. Thus, following diabetes, when cardiac glucose utilization is impaired, the heart undergoes metabolic transformation wherein it switches to using fats as an exclusive source of energy. Although this switching is geared to help the heart initially, in the long term, this has terrible end results. These include the generation of noxious by products which kill cardiac cells, reduce cardiac function and ultimately result in an increased morbidity and mortality. The objectives of his studies is to examine the mechanisms behind this “metabolic switching” during diabetes. Given the disturbing news that diabetes is rampant across the globe, and that its incidence will double in Canada, results from these studies will help in gaining more insight into the mechanism(s) by which the heart fails during diabetes. This may assist other researchers in devising new therapeutic strategies to restore metabolic equilibrium, to help prevent or delay heart disease seen during diabetes.


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