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Clin Invest Med. 2008 Dec 1;31(6):E373-9.

The relationship of inflammatory cytokines with asthma and obesity.

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Clinic of Internal Medicine, Istanbul Training andResearch Hospital, Turkey.



Obesity is considered a risk factor for asthma. However, the mechanism that connects the two is not well understood. In this study we investigated the relationship between inflammatory cytokines and acute phase reactants in obesity, and asthma.


Asthmatic and control subjects were divided into 2 sub-groups: obese and non-obese. Anthropomorphic parameters, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), C-reactive protein (CRP), leptin, tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), and interleukin-6 (IL-6) were compared between obese, asthmatics and control subjects of normal weight. Respiratory function tests and allergy skin tests were also performed in the patients with asthma.


ESR, CRP, TNF-alpha, IL-6, and leptin levels in obese asthma patients were higher than in the healthy controls (P < 0.01). TNF-alpha, IL-6, and leptin levels were higher in obese asthma patients than in non-obese asthma patients (P < 0.01). Inflammatory markers were related to parameters of obesity. No association was found between allergy test results and obesity (P > 0.05).


We identified a relationship between acute phase reactants and inflammatory cytokines, and the criteria for obesity in obese asthma patients. Inflammation markers were at their highest levels in obese asthma patients. Leptin levels were considerably higher in obese patients than in normal weight controls. Like obesity, leptin is suggested to play a role in the pathogenesis of asthma.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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