Levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines (IL1β, IL18) and C-reactive protein in patients with diabetic retinopathy
Background and aims: Diabetic retinopathy is a major complication of diabetes mellitus (DM), which remains a leading cause of visual loss in working-age populations. This study aimed to investigate serum levels of IL1β, IL18, and C-reactive protein (CRP) in patients with diabetic retinopathy. Material and methods: 70 insulin-dependent patients and 60 non-insulin dependent patients with diabetic retinopathy were enrolled in the study. Interleukin levels were assessed using “Vector-Best”, Ukraine reagent kits on a STAT FAX 303 plus analyzer. The level of C-reactive protein was determined using a CRPLX set of reagents “Roche Diagnostics”, Germany on a COBAS INTEGRA 400 plus automatic analyzer. Results: In insulin-dependent patients there were no statistically significant differences in IL1β and IL18 levels vs control group. Serum level of IL1β in non-insulin dependent patients was 43.4 % higher vs control group, and 50.0 % higher than in insulin-dependent patients. Serum level of IL18 in non-insulin dependent patients was 12.3 % higher than vs control group and 11.4 % higher vs insulin-dependent patients. Also we have found that the level of CRP in insulin-dependent patients increased by 24.1 % vs control group. In non-insulin dependent patients CRP level did not change significantly vs control group. Conclusions: The obtained results suggest that insulin-dependent patients with diabetic retinopathy demonstrate predominance of acute inflammation, which is confirmed by acute phase marker increasing, and normal levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines in blood serum. Patients with diabetic retinopathy who do not use insulin were found to have increased serum levels of IL1β and IL18 and normal level of CRP, which suggests the predominance of pro-inflammatory processes (mobilization and activation of cells typically involved in inflammatory process).