Erythrocyte Membrane Lipid Peroxidation and Glycosylated Hemoglobin in Diabetes

  1. John J Herbst
  1. Department of Pediatrics, Louisiana State University School of Medicine Shreveport, Louisiana
  1. Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. Sushil K. Jain, Department of Pediatrics, Louisiana State University Medical Center, 1501 Kings Highway, Shreveport, LA 71130.


Erythrocytes of diabetic patients have abnormal membrane properties. We examined in vivo membrane lipid peroxidation in erythrocytes of diabetic subjects and its possible relationship with hyperglycemia. Lipid peroxidation was assessed in fresh, untreated erythrocytes by quantitating thiobarbituric acid reactivity and an adduct of phospholipids and malonyldialdehyde (MDA), an end product of lipid peroxidation, with thin-layer chromatography of lipid extract of diabetic erythrocytes. There was a significantly increased membrane lipid peroxidation in diabetic erythrocytes compared with nondiabetic erythrocytes. The degree of membrane lipid peroxidative damage in erythrocytes was significantly correlated with the level of glycosylated hemoglobin, an index of mean glucose level for the preceding 3–4mo. This suggests that peroxidation of membrane lipids and accumulation of MDA occurs in erythrocytes of diabetic patients.

  • Received March 20, 1989.
  • Revision received July 19, 1989.
  • Accepted July 19, 1989.
| Table of Contents