Low PAI-1 activity in relation to inflammatory parameters, insulin profile and body mass index

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Background and objective

High plasminogen activator inhibitor type 1 (PAI-1) activity is associated with inflammatory reactions and insulin resistance, but it is unclear what regulates PAI-1 activity at the low end. The purpose of this study was to investigate if patients with low PAI-1 activity have a lack of inflammatory response or a low insulin level.


Retrospective cohort study with internal controls.


Sixty-three patients referred for investigation of bleeding tendency and with low PAI-1 activity were compared with 118 patients with normal or high PAI-1 activity.


Levels of C-peptide, proinsulin, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6). Adjustments were made for body mass index (BMI), oral oestrogens and age. Low PAI-1 activity was defined as less than 1 U mL−1.


Body mass index in the low normal range, oral oestrogens, young age and low C-peptide were significantly associated with low PAI-1 activity and there was a trend for association with IL-6 in univariable analysis. The effect of age disappeared after correction for oral oestrogens and the effect of C-peptide and IL-6 disappeared after further adjustments. Low BMI remained as the strongest predictor of low PAI-1 activity.


Patients with bleeding tendency and low PAI-1 activity have inflammatory and insulin profiles similar to those with normal or high PAI-1, whereas BMI seems to be the most important determinant.

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