Inflammatory markers and bone health in postmenopausal women: a cross-sectional overview

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BioMed Central Ltd
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Background: Cytokines, chemokines, C-reactive proteins (CRP) and ferritin are known inflammatory markers. However, cytokines such as interleukin (IL-1β), (IL-6) and tumour necrosis factor (TNF-α) have been reported to interfere with both the bone resorption and bone formation processes. Similarly, immune cell cytokines are known to contribute to inflammation of the adipose tissue especially with obesity. IL-10 but not IL-33 has been linked to lower ferritin levels and anemia. In this study, we hypothesized that specific cytokine levels in the plasma of women with low bone mineral density (BMD) would be higher than those in the plasma of healthy women due to the actions of elevated levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines in inducing osteoclast formation and differentiation during senescence. Results: Levels of cytokines (IFNα2, IFN-γ, IL-12p70, IL-33) and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) were significantly higher in the plasma of the osteoporotic group compared to the osteopenic and/or healthy groups. Meanwhile CRP levels were significantly lower in women with osteoporosis (P = 0.040) than the osteopenic and healthy groups. Hip BMD values were significantly lower in women with high/detectable values of IL-1β (P = 0.020) and IL-6 (P = 0.030) compared to women where these were not detected. Similarly, women with high/detectable values of IL-1β had significantly lower spine BMD than those where IL-1β was not detected (P = 0.030). Participants' CRP levels were significantly positively correlated with BMI, fat mass and fat percentage (P < 0.001). In addition, ferritin levels of women with high/detectable values of anti-osteoclastogenic IL-10 (P = 0.012) and IL-33 (P = 0.017) were significantly lower than those where these were not detected. There was no statistically significant association between TNF-α and BMD of the hip and lumbar spine. Conclusions: High levels of cytokines (IFNα2, IFN-γ, IL-12p70, IL-33) and MCP-1 in apparently healthy postmenopausal women are associated with bone health issues. In addition, an increase in levels of IL-10 and IL-33 may be associated with low ferritin levels in this age group. Trial registration: ANZCTR, ACTRN12617000802303. Registered May 31st, 2017,
Inflammatory markers, Cytokines, Chemokines, Ferritin, Osteo-immunology, Bone mineral density, Bone health, Postmenopausal women, Aging