Increased circulatory levels of fractalkine (CX3CL1) are associated with inflammatory chemokines and cytokines in individuals with type-2 diabetes

Sardar Sindhu, Nadeem Akhter, Hossein Arefanian, Areej Abu-AlRoub, Shamsha Ali, Ajit Wilson, Asma Al-Hubail, Shaima Al-Beloushi, Saad Al-Zanki, Rasheed Ahmad

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21 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Fractalkine (CX3CL1) is involved in the development of numerous inflammatory conditions including metabolic diseases. However, changes in the circulatory fractalkine levels in type-2 diabetes (T2D) and their relationship with inflammatory chemokines/cytokines remain unclear. The aim of the study was to determine the T2D-associated modulations in plasma fractalkine levels and investigate their relationship with circulatory chemokines/cytokines. Methods: A total of 47 plasma samples were collected from 23 T2D and 24 non-diabetic individuals selected over a wide range of body mass index (BMI). Clinical metabolic parameters were determined using standard commercial kits. Fractalkine and chemokines/cytokines were measured using Luminex X-MAP® technology. C-reactive protein (CRP) was measured by ELISA. The data were compared using unpaired t-test and the dependence between two variables was assessed by Pearson's correlation coefficient (r). Results: Plasma fractalkine levels were significantly higher (P = 0.005) in T2D patients (166 ± 14.22 pg/ml) as compared with non-diabetics (118 ± 8.90 pg/ml). In T2D patients, plasma fractalkine levels correlated positively (P ≤ 0.05) with inflammatory chemokines/cytokines including CCL3 (r = 0.52), CCL4 (r = 0.85), CCL11 (r = 0.51), CXCL1 (r = 0.67), G-CSF (r = 0.91), IFN-α2 (r = 0.97), IL-17A (r = 0.79), IL-1β (r = 0.97), IL-12P70 (r = 0.90), TNF-α (r = 0.58), and IL-6 (r = 0.60). In non-diabetic individuals, fractalkine levels correlated (P ≤ 0.05) with those of CCL4 (r = 0.49), IL-1β (r = 0.73), IL-12P70 (r = 0.41), and TNF-α (r = 0.50). Notably, plasma fractalkine levels in T2D patients associated with systemic inflammation (CRP) (r = 0.65, P = 0.02). Conclusions: The altered plasma fractalkine levels associate differentially with inflammatory chemokines/cytokines in T2D patients which may have implications for T2D immunopathogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number15
JournalJournal of Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2017


  • Chemokines
  • CX3CL1
  • Cytokines
  • Fractalkine
  • Inflammation
  • Obesity
  • Type-2 diabetes


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