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Arch Dermatol Res. 2014 Sep;306(7):653-60. doi: 10.1007/s00403-014-1467-5. Epub 2014 May 22.

Complement C3 as a marker of cardiometabolic risk in psoriasis.

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Department of Dermatology, Centro Hospitalar do Porto, Porto, Portugal,


Complement C3 is an emerging risk factor in metabolic and cardiovascular diseases. It is elevated in patients with cardiovascular disease, predicts future myocardial infarction, is closely related to insulin resistance and appears to be involved in atherogenesis. C3 levels have been associated with body fat. The aim of this study was to compare C3 levels in psoriasis patients and controls and to investigate within psoriasis patients the relationship between C3 levels with several measures of body fat, markers of cardiometabolic risk and subclinical atherosclerosis. Eighty adult patients with severe plaque-type psoriasis, without psoriatic arthritis or receiving systemic therapy/phototherapy in the previous 3 months, and 95 otherwise healthy patients were enrolled. Subjects with cardiovascular disease, other systemic inflammatory diseases, use of anti-inflammatory drugs or any infectious diseases in the 4 weeks prior to study enrollment were excluded. All subjects underwent clinical and laboratory evaluation and psoriasis patients underwent multidetector computed tomography scan for coronary artery calcification, abdominal fat and epicardial adipose tissue quantification. C3 levels were increased in psoriasis patients compared to controls (129.25 ± 20.92 vs 118.24 ± 17.86, P < 0.001), even after adjustment for age, sex and waist circumference (P = 0.043), indicating that this association was not solely mediated by the adipose tissue. Within psoriasis patients, C3 levels were independently associated with abdominal visceral fat, insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome and oxidized LDL-cholesterol, while C-reactive protein did not, showing that C3 may be a better marker of cardiometabolic risk than C-reactive protein. Although more studies are needed, C3 may be a useful marker of cardiometabolic risk in psoriasis.

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