Background Chronic plaque psoriasis is associated with obesity, which is a metabolic and inflammatory disorder. Adipokines are involved in the pathogenesis of psoriasis and they are biomarkers of obesity-related inflammation.
Objectives To measure serum adipokines in patients with chronic plaque psoriasis treated with infliximab.
Methods Serum levels of chemerin, resistin, visfatin, C-reactive protein (CRP), lipids, glycaemia and liver enzymes were measured in 40 patients with psoriasis and 40 controls matched by age, sex and body mass index (BMI). Adipokines were measured at baseline and after 2–12 months of treatment with infliximab 5 mg kg−1.
Results At baseline, levels of chemerin (195·9 ± 48·5 vs. 145·6 ± 27·1 ng mL−1), resistin (2·03 ± 0·9 vs. 1·4 ± 0·5 ng mL−1) and CRP (5·5 ± 7·3 vs. 1·9 ± 4·4 mg L−1) were higher (P < 0·01) in patients with psoriasis compared with controls. Psoriasis was associated with elevated chemerin level independently of age, sex, BMI and levels of cholesterol and triglycerides. Chemerin was linearly correlated to CRP (r = 0·4, P = 0·01) and resistin (r = 0·3, P = 0·01). Chemerin levels were higher in patients affected by psoriatic arthritis than in patients with psoriasis without arthritis (195·5 ± 49·1 vs. 158·1 ± 37·5 ng mL−1, P = 0·01). After 2 months of infliximab treatment a significant reduction of chemerin, resistin and CRP levels was observed.
Conclusions Patients with psoriasis have higher blood levels of adipokines, which normalize during therapy with infliximab. Whether this reduction is a direct effect of infliximab or secondary to a reduction of inflammation should be further investigated.