Korean J Asthma Allergy Clin Immunol.  2009 Mar;29(1):46-52.

Serum Ghrelin Level is Associated with Severity of Bronchial Hyperresponsiveness

Abstract

BACKGROUND
The prevalences of both asthma and obesity have increased. One possibility of this increase is systemic changes in immune function in obese subjects. Several obesity-related hormones and cytokines have a proinflammatory effect on the airway, which may lead to bronchial hyperresponsiveness (BHR). OBJECTIVE: To determine whether 2 representative appetite-regulating hormones (leptin and ghrelin) are associated with BHR. METHOD: Thirty-nine non-smoker adults, who had cough or dyspnea, were enrolled in this study. Subjects were divided into 3 groups according to the level of methacholine PC20 (moderate to severe, <2 mg/mL; mild, 2< or =PC20<8 mg/mL; normal, > or =8 mg/mL). Subjects in each group were age, sex and body mass index. The serum levels of leptin and ghrelin were analyzed by enzyme immunoassay. RESULT: There were significant differences in the serum ghrelin level between 3 groups (P=0.036). The serum level of ghrelin was the lowest in the moderate to severe BHR group (4.7 ng/mL), followed by 6.1 in the mild BHR group and 18.6 in the normal BHR group. There were no significant differences in the serum leptin level between 3 groups (54.1 vs. 57.6 vs. 53.2 pg/mL; P=0.982).
CONCLUSION
Ghrelin may play an essential role in the prevention of BHR.

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