Microvascular Dysfunction: A Potential Mechanism in the Pathogenesis of Obesity-associated Insulin Resistance and Hypertension

Michiel P. de Boer, Rick I. Meijer, Nienke J. Wijnstok, Amy M. Jonk, Alphons J. H. M. Houben, Coen D. Stehouwer, Yvo M. Smulders, Etto C. Eringa, Erik H. Serne*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The intertwined epidemics of obesity and related disorders such as hypertension, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, and subsequent cardiovascular disease pose a major public health challenge. To meet this challenge, we must understand the interplay between adipose tissue and the vasculature. Microvascular dysfunction is important not only in the development of obesity-related target-organ damage but also in the development of cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension and insulin resistance. The present review examines the role of microvascular dysfunction as an explanation for the associations among obesity, hypertension, and impaired insulin-mediated glucose disposal. We also discuss communicative pathways from adipose tissue to the microcirculation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-18
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012


  • microvascular dysfunction
  • insulin resistance
  • hypertension
  • diabetes
  • obesity

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