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Background: At present, convincing data on the role of immune system in pathophysiology of obesity are lacking, which makes it necessary to investigate this issue. Aim: To assess metabolic status and characteristics of immune system in patients with overweight and morbid obesity.

Materials and methods: One hundred and ninety two patients with overweight and advanced obesity (mean body mass index (BMI) 36.8 ± 7.3 kg/m. aged from 19 to 55 years) were recruited in to the study. Depending on the grade of obesity, the patients were divided into two groups. Group 1 included 84 overweight patients (BMI 27.65 ± 0.17 kg/m.), group 2 included 88 patients with obesity grade III (BMI 44.03 ± 0.44 kg/m.). The groups were comparable as to their age and gender. The control group comprised 20 otherwise healthy subjects with normal body weight. Assessments included parameters of carbohydrate and lipid metabolism, hemodynamic parameters, immune status including cytokine profile.

Results: In patients of both groups abnormalities in carbohydrate and lipid metabolism were found, together with changes of hemodynamic parameters which were more advanced with higher degree of obesity. These parameters demonstrated that obesity promotes manifestation of metabolic syndrome. There was remarkable imbalance in pro-inflammatory cytokines. Patients with obesity grade III had a statistically significant (р = 0.05) increase in their serum levels of tumor necrosis factor-α (6.32 ± 0.49 vs 2.14 ± 0.25), interleukin (IL)-4 (7.56 ± 0.44 vs 1.44 ± 0.10), IL-6 (5.39 ± 0.89 vs 2.02 ± 0.16), IL-17 (2.74 ± 0.29 vs 0.59 ± 0.20) both in basal and stimulated conditions, compared to those in patients with overweight and control patients.

Conclusion: The study showed that imbalance in immune system increases with an increase of obesity grade. This imbalance implies lymphocyte maturation and differentiation, higher cytotoxicity of immunocompetent cells, over expression of receptors both to proand anti-inflammatory cytokines, apoptosis activation, abnormalities in inter-cellular cooperation and disorders of phagocytic adaptation reserve. 

About the authors

Z. R. Gusova

Rostov State Medical University, Rostov-on-Don

Author for correspondence.

Gusova Zalina Ruslanovna – PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Endocrinology, Faculty of Advanced Training and Professional Retraining of Specialists

* 111–11 Metallurgicheskaya ul., Rostov-on-Don, 344029, Russian Federation. Tel.: +7 (863) 22 82 69. E-mail: 

Russian Federation

E. O. Dzantieva

Rostov State Medical University, Rostov-on-Don


Dzantieva Elizaveta Olegovna – Postgraduate Student, Department of Endocrinology, Faculty of Advanced Training and Professional Retraining of Specialists

Russian Federation

I. A. Khripun

Rostov State Medical University, Rostov-on-Don


Khripun Irina Alekseevna – PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Endocrinology, Faculty of Advanced Training and Professional Retraining of Specialists

Russian Federation


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Copyright (c) 2015 Gusova Z.R., Dzantieva E.O., Khripun I.A.

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