In obesity, macrophage activation and infiltration in adipose tissue (AT) underlie chronic low-grade inflammation-induced insulin resistance. Although dectin-1 is primarily a pathogen recognition receptor and innate immune response modulator, its role in metabolic syndromes remains to be clarified. This study aimed to investigate the dectin-1 gene expression in subcutaneous AT in the context of obesity and associated inflammatory markers. Subcutaneous AT biopsies were collected from 59 nondiabetic (lean/overweight/obese) individuals. AT gene expression levels of dectin-1 and inflammatory markers were determined via real-time reverse transcriptase-quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Dectin-1 protein expression was assessed using immunohistochemistry. Plasma lipid profiles were measured by ELISA. AT dectin-1 transcripts and proteins were significantly elevated in obese as compared to lean individuals. AT dectin-1 transcripts correlated positively with body mass index and fat percentage (r ≥ 0.340, p ≤ 0.017). AT dectin-1 RNA levels correlated positively with clinical parameters, including plasma C-reactive protein and CCL5/RANTES, but negatively with that of adiponectin. The expression of dectin-1 transcripts was associated with that of various proinflammatory cytokines, chemokines, and their cognate receptors (r ≥ 0.300, p ≤ 0.05), but not with anti-inflammatory markers. Dectin-1 and members of the TLR signaling cascade were found to be significantly associated, suggesting an interplay between the two pathways. Dectin-1 expression was correlated with monocyte/macrophage markers, including CD16, CD68, CD86, and CD163, suggesting its monocytes/macrophage association in an adipose inflammatory microenvironment. Dectin-1 expression was independently predicted by CCR5, CCL20, TLR2, and MyD88. In conclusion, dectin-1 may be regarded as an AT biomarker of metabolic inflammation in obesity.
Keywords: adipose tissue; dectin-1; metabolic inflammation; obesity; proinflammatory markers.