Functional Capacity of Neutrophils From Class III Obese Patients

Authors

  • Mark D. Trottier,

    1. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA
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  • Afia Naaz,

    1. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA
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  • Kathy Kacynski,

    1. Weight Management and Bariatrics Department, Sparrow Weight Management Center, Sparrow Health System, Lansing, Michigan, USA
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  • Panduranga R. Yenumula,

    1. Weight Management and Bariatrics Department, Sparrow Weight Management Center, Sparrow Health System, Lansing, Michigan, USA
    2. Department of Surgery, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA
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  • Pamela J. Fraker

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA
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(fraker@msu.edu)

Abstract

Class III obesity is associated with chronic inflammation and a variety of changes in immune function. Yet surprisingly little was known about the status of neutrophils that represent the first line of immune defense. The aim of this study was to assess key functions of neutrophils from class III obese patients, namely phagocytosis, superoxide production, chemotaxis, and response to endotoxin challenge, and compare their responses with lean controls. Thirty obese patients (BMI 48.8 ± 6.6 kg/m2) with comorbidities such as diabetes, hyperlipidemia, high blood pressure, etc. and nine lean (BMI between 20 and 25) subjects were enrolled in the study. Neutrophils from class III obese patients phagocytosed Escherichia coli (E. coli) at similar rates and with adequate numbers of bacteria taken up per cell compared with cells from lean subjects. Neutrophil production of superoxide, which is key to rapid killing of pathogens, showed modest diminution in the class III obese, which increased among patients with BMI >50. Chemotactic activity of neutrophils from class III obese patients was not altered. However, neutrophils from obese subjects showed an increased response to low-dose endotoxin, with concomitant reduced apoptosis and extension of their half-life compared with lean subjects, which suggests possible hyperresponsiveness of these neutrophils. Overall, neutrophil activity was not significantly altered by age, gender, diabetic status, or hyperlipidemia. Collectively, these results suggest that class III obese patients, even with comorbidities, have normal or nearly normal phagocytic, chemotactic, and superoxide generating capacity.

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