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Experimental Diabetes Research
Volume 2012, Article ID 916560, 11 pages
Review Article

Regenerative Therapies for Diabetic Microangiopathy

1Nephrology Division, Transplantation Research Center (TRC), Children’s Hospital, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA
2DiSTeBA, Università del Salento, 73100 Lecce, Italy
3Sorgente Research, 20127 Milan, Italy
4Department of Biophysical and Medical Science, Higher Institute of Medical Technology, 1006 Tunis, Tunisia
5Department of Medicine, San Raffaele Scientific Institute, 20132 Milan, Italy
6Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Bologna, 40138 Bologna, Italy

Received 17 November 2011; Accepted 18 January 2012

Academic Editor: Paolo Madeddu

Copyright © 2012 Roberto Bassi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Hyperglycaemia occurring in diabetes is responsible for accelerated arterial remodeling and atherosclerosis, affecting the macro- and the microcirculatory system. Vessel injury is mainly related to deregulation of glucose homeostasis and insulin/insulin-precursors production, generation of advanced glycation end-products, reduction in nitric oxide synthesis, and oxidative and reductive stress. It occurs both at extracellular level with increased calcium and matrix proteins deposition and at intracellular level, with abnormalities of intracellular pathways and increased cell death. Peripheral arterial disease, coronary heart disease, and ischemic stroke are the main causes of morbidity/mortality in diabetic patients representing a major clinical and economic issue. Pharmacological therapies, administration of growth factors, and stem cellular strategies are the most effective approaches and will be discussed in depth in this comprehensive review covering the regenerative therapies of diabetic microangiopathy.