Cardiovascular risk of prediabetes is still
subject to controversies. We analyzed the associations
between insulin resistance, adipokines and incipient
atherosclerosis estimated by intima-media thickness
(IMT) in a cross-sectional study on 122 prediabetic
subjects without clinical signs of atherosclerotic disease.
Homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance
(HOMA-IR, calculated as fasting insulin × fasting plasma
glucose / 22.5), adiponectin, leptin, leptin-to-adiponectin
ratio, carotid and femoral IMT were evaluated. We also
assessed other parameters related to insulin resistance and
adipokines (HbA1c, anthropometric and lipid parameters),
as they may also influence atherosclerosis. Carotid IMT was
correlated to adiponectin and leptin-to-adiponectin ratio
(all p < 0.05), but not with HOMA-IR or leptin, while
femoral IMT showed no relationship with these factors.
After adjusting for leptin, leptin-to-adiponectin ratio,
triglycerides, HDL-cholesterol, cholesterol-to-HDL ratio,
triglycerides-to-HDL ratio and HbA1c, IMT values became
correlated with HOMA-IR. Adjustment for HOMA-IR induced
the appearance of new correlations between adipokines
and both IMT values. In conclusion, insulin resistance and
adipokines seem related to IMT in prediabetic subjects
without clinical signs of arterial obstruction.