Altered adipokine serum concentrations early reflect impaired adipose tissue function in obese patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D). It is not entirely clear whether these adipokine alterations are already present in prediabetic states and so far there is no comprehensive adipokine panel available. Therefore, the aim of this study was to assess distinct adipokine profiles in patients with normal glucose tolerance (NGT), impaired fasting glucose (IFG), impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or T2D.
Based on 75 g oral glucose tolerance tests, 124 individuals were divided into groups of IFG (n = 35), IGT (n = 45), or NGT (n = 43). Furthermore, 56 subjects with T2D were included. Serum concentrations of adiponectin, chemerin, fetuin-A, leptin, interleukin (IL)-6, retinol-binding protein 4 (RBP4), monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP)-1, vaspin, progranulin, and soluble leptin receptor (sOBR) were measured by ELISAs.
Chemerin, progranulin, fetuin-A, and RBP4, IL-6, adiponectin and leptin serum concentrations were differentially regulated among the four investigated groups but only circulating chemerin was significantly different in patients with IGT compared to those with IFG. Compared to T2D the IFG subjects had higher serum chemerin, progranulin, fetuin-A and RBP4 levels which was not detectable in the comparison of the T2D and IGT group.
Alterations in adipokine serum concentrations are already detectable in prediabetic states, mainly for chemerin, and may reflect adipose tissue dysfunction as an early pathogenetic event in T2D development. In addition, distinct adipokine serum patterns in individuals with IFG and IGT suggest a specific role of adipose tissue in the pathogenesis of these prediabetic states.