Metabolic syndrome (MS) is a disease with an inflammatory component. Telmisartan improves insulin resistance in MS, but its relationship with the inflammatory state is unknown. We investigated the effect of 3-month telmisartan therapy on homeostatic model assessment-insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) in hypertensive subjects with MS with regard to the levels of circulating plasma cytokines.
Methods A total of 42 patients were included in this study; 30 were men (71%), aged 50 ± 8.2 years (mean ± SD). Cytokines and metabolic parameters were analyzed before and after treatment with telmisartan.
Results Twenty-eight patients showed low plasma levels of cytokines (group 1) similar to control subjects, and 14 showed high levels (group 2). Treatment with telmisartan diminished by 35% HOMA-IR in group 1 (4.5 ± 3.1 vs 2.9 ± 2.1), without improvement in group 2. In the multivariate analysis, the predictors of improvement of HOMA-IR in response to telmisartan treatment were low levels of cytokines, whereas systolic and diastolic blood pressure and the elevation of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein had a negative effect.
Conclusions Our study provides evidence of a more favorable effect of telmisartan on glucose homeostasis in patients with MS and low levels of serum cytokines.