Concetta Irace MD, PhD, Specialist in Internal Medicine, Associate Professor in Technology and Medical Sciences, Department of Health Science, University Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy. Medical Assistant, UOC Endocrinologia e Malattie del Metabolismo, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria Mater Domini, Catanzaro, Italy. She started her research at the Center for Metabolic Diseases, University Federico II, Naples, Prof. Mario Mancini. She spent a 3-month period as Invited visitor at Department of Physiology, “School of Kinesiology and Health Studies” Queen’s University, Kingston (Ontario), Canada, and a 3-month period, as Invited Visitor, at the General Clinical Research Center (GCR), Director: Prof Eugene Barrett, University of Virginia Health Sciences Center, Charlottesville, VA. Her research focuses on non-invasive, ultrasound-based, diagnosis of extra-coronary atherosclerosis. First she studied the association between metabolic risk factors and early carotid atherosclerosis. She standardized a computerized system measuring intima plus media thickness of carotid artery (IMT). This was also the topic of her PhD thesis.
Subsequently she studied the functional alterations of the arteries induced by cardiovascular risk factors. She described for the first time that not only the reduction of vasodilation, but also its delay, is predictive of cardiovascular disease. More recently she has begun to study the relationship between hemeorheological factors (mainly blood and plasma viscosity) and endothelial function. In detail, she studied how shear stress modulates the IMT and the development of arterial plaques. Shear stress represents the frictional force exerted by the flowing blood of endothelial surface. Very recently, thanks to a collaboration with Professor Eugene Barrett, University of Virginia, she has developed a contrast ultrasound-based method to study muscle microcirculation. The study of muscle perfusion is interesting mainly in subjects with diabetes. Insulin, as known, regulates its own delivery by acting on endothelial cells, and smooth muscle cells. Insulin relaxes terminal arterioles enhancing tissue perfusion thereby increasing the delivery of both insulin and glucose to the tissues.
Prof. Irace is also involved in the management and care of patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes. In particular, she is interested in the remote control of glycemia using cloud-based software downloading data from traditional meters and CGM system. She has also acquired expertise in use and management of implantable continuous glucose monitoring system. She is the last author of the Clinical Practice recommendation on the routine use of the long term implantable sensor, and the first author of the real word evidence on clinical use of 180-day implantable glucose sensor in Italy. Currently Prof Irace is involved in research aimed to evaluate the benefit of CGM, using the glucose rate of change, in the management of postprandial hyperglycemia. She attended scientific board working on technologies. She is member and next coordinator of the Italian study group for technology of the Italian Society of Diabetology (SID).