ONTEXT: Wnt1-inducible signaling pathway protein 1 (WISP1) is a novel adipokine participating in adipose tissue (AT) dysfunction; so far, no data on WISP1 in diabetes are available. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate plasma WISP1 in subjects with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and its correlates linked to AT inflammation. DESIGN AND PARTICIPANTS: For this cross-sectional study, 97 consecutive dysmetabolic patients were recruited at the diabetes outpatient clinics of Sapienza University in Rome; 71 of them had T2D, with (n = 35) or without (n = 36) obesity, and 26 were obese patients without diabetes. Twenty-one normal-weight nondiabetic individuals were enrolled as a control group. Study participants underwent clinical workup and blood sampling for metabolic/inflammatory characterization; magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data on subcutaneous AT and visceral AT (VAT) area, hepatic fat content, and VAT homogeneity were available for most diabetic patients. RESULTS: Plasma WISP1 significantly increased throughout classes of obesity and correlated with greater VAT area, interleukin-8 (IL-8), and lower adiponectin levels, without differing between diabetic and nondiabetic participants. Higher IL-8 was the main determinant of increased WISP1. MRI-assessed VAT inhomogeneity was associated with higher WISP1, IL-8 and C-reactive protein levels, independent of obesity; high WISP1 strongly predicted VAT inhomogeneity (P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: WISP1 levels are increased in obese persons and are directly related to adiposity, independent of glycemic status or insulin resistance; moreover, they are strongly associated with increased plasma IL-8 and signal abnormalities of VAT. The overall data add insights to the mechanisms underlying metabolic alterations and may open a scenario for innovative therapeutic approaches for diabetes prevention and care.
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