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BMC Infectious Diseases

Open Access

Resistin, insulin sensitivity and markers of inflammation in a cohort of Romanian patients under combined antiretroviral therapy

  • Cătălin Tilişcan1, 2Email author,
  • Victoria Aramă1, 2,
  • Raluca Mihăilescu1,
  • Daniela Munteanu1,
  • Mihaela Rădulescu1, 2,
  • Adriana Hristea1, 2,
  • Cristina Popescu1, 2,
  • Ana Maria Tudor1, 2,
  • Mihai Lazăr1, 2,
  • Roxana Petre1,
  • Adrian Streinu-Cercel1, 2,
  • Daniela Adriana Ion2 and
  • Sorin Ștefan Aramă2
BMC Infectious Diseases201414(Suppl 7):P87

Published: 15 October 2014


Several authors have recently reported that resistin, a novel adipokine, may be associated with insulin resistance in HIV patients. Our objective was to evaluate resistin dysfunction in correlation with insulin sensitivity, lipid abnormalities and markers of inflammation in a cohort of adult HIV infected patients who were under complex combined therapy (cART).


We performed a transversal study that used the following inclusion criteria: non-diabetic patients with documented HIV infection, undergoing stable cART for at least 6 months. Clinical, metabolic, inflammatory and immuno-virological patterns were assessed (age, sex, body mass index, HIV load, actual and nadir CD4, duration of HIV infection and antiretroviral therapy, lipid panel, C-reactive protein - CRP). Resistin levels were evaluated using KAPME Biosource EASIA. In order to test the sensitivity to insulin we used the QUICKI index, the best surrogate marker after glucose clamp index. Parametric and non-parametric variables were described using means (±Standard Deviation - SD) and medians (Interquartile Ratio - IQR), respectively.


We enrolled 94 patients (56.4% males, 43.6% females), with a mean age of 31.9 (±13.5) years. The median time from HIV diagnostic was 63 (74) months; the median time of treatment was 60 (50) months. More than half of patients (72.3%) had undetectable HIV load and the median CD4 count was 492 (419)/cmm. The mean level of resistin was 6 (±2.6) ng/mL. The most frequent resistin dysfunction, after adjusting the results by sex and age, was hyporesistinemia (40.2%); hyperresistinemia was less frequent (17.4%). Most patients had insulin resistance (66.3%), based on QUICKI levels below the cut-off point of 0.33. We found no relation between QUICKI values and resistin, in a linear regression model (R=0.054, p=0.614) or correlation between the presence of insulin resistance and resistin dysfunction (p=0.320). Lipid metabolism abnormalities were not influenced by resistin dysfunction. Resistin serum values were positively correlated with the levels of CRP (R=0.21, p=0.05).


In our cohort of young HIV infected patients, insulin resistance was not mediated by resistin dysfunction, contrary to recent reports, but may contribute to an increased inflammatory profile.



This paper is supported by the Sectoral Operational Programme Human Resources Development (SOP HRD), financed from the European Social Fund and by the Romanian Government under the contract numbers POSDRU/159/1.5/S/137390.

Authors’ Affiliations

National Institute for Infectious Diseases "Prof. Dr. Matei Balş"
Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy


© Tilişcan et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.