Type 2 diabetes mellitus in the Goto-Kakizaki rat impairs microvascular function and contributes to premature skeletal muscle fatigue

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


External Institution(s)

  • Michigan State University


Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)626-637
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of applied physiology
Issue number3
StatusPublished - Sep 29 2018


Despite extensive investigation into the impact of metabolic disease on vascular function and, by extension, tissue perfusion and organ function, interpreting results for specific risk factors can be complicated by the additional risks present in most models. To specifically determine the impact of type 2 diabetes without obesity on skeletal muscle microvascular structure/function and on active hyperemia with elevated metabolic demand, we used 17-wk-old Goto-Kakizaki (GK) rats to study microvascular function at multiple levels of resolution. Gracilis muscle arterioles demonstrated blunted dilation to acetylcholine (both ex vivo proximal and in situ distal arterioles) and elevated shear (distal arterioles only). All other alterations to reactivity appeared to reflect compromised endothelial function associated with increased thromboxane (Tx)A2 production and oxidant stress/inflammation rather than alterations to vascular smooth muscle function. Structural changes to the microcirculation of GK rats were confined to reduced microvessel density of ~12%, with no evidence for altered vascular wall mechanics. Active hyperemia with either field stimulation of in situ cremaster muscle or electrical stimulation via the sciatic nerve for in situ gastrocnemius muscle was blunted in GK rats, primarily because of blunted functional dilation of skeletal muscle arterioles. The blunted active hyperemia was associated with impaired oxygen uptake (V O2) across the muscle and accelerated muscle fatigue. Acute interventions to reduce oxidant stress (TEMPOL) and TxA2 action (SQ-29548) or production (dazmegrel) improved muscle perfusion, V O2, and muscle performance. These results suggest that type 2 diabetes mellitus in GK rats impairs skeletal muscle arteriolar function apparently early in the progression of the disease and potentially via an increased reactive oxygen species/inflammation-induced TxA2 production/action on network function as a major contributing mechanism.

    Research areas

  • Animal models of diabetes, Endothelial dysfunction, Metabolic disease, Regulation of blood flow, Vascular dysfunction