OBJECTIVES: Cystathionine β-synthase is a major enzyme in the metabolism of plasma homocysteine. Hyperhomocysteinemia is positively associated with hypertension and stroke. The present study was performed to examine the possible effects of Cystathionine β-synthase promoter methylation on the development of hypertension and stroke. METHODS: Using quantitative methylation-specific PCR, we determined the Cystathionine β-synthase methylation levels in 218 healthy individuals and 132 and 243 age- and gender-matched stroke and hypertensive patients, respectively. The relative changes in Cystathionine β-synthase promoter methylation were analyzed using the 2–ΔΔCt method. The percent of the methylated reference of Cystathionine β-synthase was used to represent the Cystathionine β-synthase promoter methylation levels. RESULTS: In this study, the Cystathionine β-synthase promoter methylation levels of hypertensive and stroke participants were both higher than that of the healthy individuals (median percentages of the methylated reference were 50.61%, 38.05% and 30.53%, respectively, all p<0.001). Multivariable analysis showed that Cystathionine β-synthase promoter hypermethylation increased the risk of hypertension [odds ratio, OR (95% confidence interval, CI)=1.035 (1.025–1.045)] and stroke [OR (95% CI)=1.015 (1.003–1.028)]. The area under the curve of Cystathionine β-synthase promoter methylation was 0.844 (95% CI: 0.796–0.892) in male patients with hypertension and 0.722 (95% CI: 0.653–0.799) in male patients with stroke. CONCLUSION: Cystathionine β-synthase promoter hypermethylation increases the risk of hypertension and stroke, especially in male patients.
OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to compare the expression levels of serum miRNAs in diabetic retinopathy and type 2 diabetes mellitus. METHODS: Serum miRNA expression profiles from diabetic retinopathy cases (type 2 diabetes mellitus patients with diabetic retinopathy) and type 2 diabetes mellitus controls (type 2 diabetes mellitus patients without diabetic retinopathy) were examined by miRNA-specific microarray analysis. Quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction was used to validate the significantly differentially expressed serum miRNAs from the microarray analysis of 45 diabetic retinopathy cases and 45 age-, sex-, body mass index- and duration-of-diabetes-matched type 2 diabetes mellitus controls. The relative changes in serum miRNA expression levels were analyzed using the 2-ΔΔCt method. RESULTS: A total of 5 diabetic retinopathy cases and 5 type 2 diabetes mellitus controls were included in the miRNA-specific microarray analysis. The serum levels of miR-3939 and miR-1910-3p differed significantly between the two groups in the screening stage; however, quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction did not reveal significant differences in miRNA expression for 45 diabetic retinopathy cases and their matched type 2 diabetes mellitus controls. CONCLUSION: Our findings indicate that miR-3939 and miR-1910-3p may not play important roles in the development of diabetic retinopathy; however, studies with a larger sample size are needed to confirm our findings.