Interrelation of chemerin and TNF-α with mtDNA copy number in adipose tissues and blood cells in obese patients with and without type 2 diabetes

Daria Skuratovskaia, Pavel Zatolokin, Maria Vulf, Ilia Mazunin, Larisa Litvinova

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14 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Inflammatory response plays a key role in the development of insulin resistance (IR) in obesity. Oxidative stress triggers the replication of the mitochondrial genome and division of the organelle. The purpose of this study was to identify the relationship of chemerin and TNF-α with mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) copy number in subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and visceral adipose tissue (mesentery of the small intestine (Mes), greater omentum (GO) and blood mononuclear cells (MNCs)) in patients with obesity with/without type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Methods: The study included 142 obese patients and 34 healthy donors. The samples used for the study were peripheral venous blood (MNCs) and ATs (SAT, Mes and GO). The measurement of mtDNA copy number was done by droplet digital PCR. Quantitative determination of insulin, adiponectin, TNF-α and chemerin in serum/plasma was performed by flow-through fluorometry and commercial ELISA kit. Statistical analysis and graphs were obtained in R Statistical Software (version 3.3.1). Results: The increase in body mass index (BMI) was accompanied by an increase in TNF-α production, an increase in mtDNA copy number in SAT and a decrease in mtDNA copy number in MNCs. The negative association between plasma chemerin and mtDNA copy number in the Mes, as well as between mtDNA copy number and chemerin expression in the Mes, in the group with BMI > 40 kg/m2 without T2DM demonstrates the protective effect of chemerin against the development of IR via the regulation of mtDNA copy number in adipose tissues. Conclusions: We thus speculated the existence of a compensatory mechanism in which leads to the increased number of mtDNA copies under the influence of proinflammatory factors. Based on the obtained data, we propose that reducing mtDNA copy number in cases of morbid obesity without T2DM has a positive effect on carbohydrate metabolism, which may help maintain glucose levels within reference values. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, mtDNA, cytokines, TNF-a, chemerin.

Original languageEnglish
Article number40
JournalBMC Medical Genomics
Publication statusPublished - 13 Mar 2019
Externally publishedYes


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