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Journal of Diabetes Research
Volume 2016, Article ID 6809703, 8 pages
Review Article

The Role of AGE/RAGE Signaling in Diabetes-Mediated Vascular Calcification

1Department of Biological Sciences, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS 39762, USA
2Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS 39762, USA

Received 8 April 2016; Accepted 19 May 2016

Academic Editor: Konstantinos Papatheodorou

Copyright © 2016 Amber M. Kay 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.


AGE/RAGE signaling has been a well-studied cascade in many different disease states, particularly diabetes. Due to the complex nature of the receptor and multiple intersecting pathways, the AGE/RAGE signaling mechanism is still not well understood. The purpose of this review is to highlight key areas of AGE/RAGE mediated vascular calcification as a complication of diabetes. AGE/RAGE signaling heavily influences both cellular and systemic responses to increase bone matrix proteins through PKC, p38 MAPK, fetuin-A, TGF-β, NFκB, and ERK1/2 signaling pathways in both hyperglycemic and calcification conditions. AGE/RAGE signaling has been shown to increase oxidative stress to promote diabetes-mediated vascular calcification through activation of Nox-1 and decreased expression of SOD-1. AGE/RAGE signaling in diabetes-mediated vascular calcification was also attributed to increased oxidative stress resulting in the phenotypic switch of VSMCs to osteoblast-like cells in AGEs-induced calcification. Researchers found that pharmacological agents and certain antioxidants decreased the level of calcium deposition in AGEs-induced diabetes-mediated vascular calcification. By understanding the role the AGE/RAGE signaling cascade plays diabetes-mediated vascular calcification will allow for pharmacological intervention to decrease the severity of this diabetic complication.