Background Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) is an inflammatory chemokine known to induce adipocyte dedifferentiation and insulin resistance. Inflammation, insulin resistance, and obesity have been implicated in the pathogenesis of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
Methods Fasting plasma from 43 baboons were assayed for MCP-1, insulin, glucose, alanine aminotransferase (ALT), and aspartate aminotransferase (AST). Adipocyte number and volume were measured via biopsies of omental adipose tissue. The homeostatic model assessment method (HOMA) was used to estimate systemic insulin resistance.
Results Sex and age adjusted correlations were significant for MCP-1 with adipocyte number (r = −0.42; P = 0.01), adipocyte volume (r = 0.38; P = 0.02), HOMA (r = 0.45; P = 0.004), ALT (r = 0.46; P = 0.03) and AST (r = 0.45; P = 0.03).
Conclusions These results suggest that MCP-1 is related with adipocyte dedifferentiation and systemic insulin resistance, thereby potentially contributing to the development of NAFLD.