The role of IL-33 and IL-1β in the development of persistent allergic rhinitis in overweight/obese children

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BACKGROUND: Few works were devoted to the study of the role of cytokines in children with allergic rhinitis (AR) with comorbid obesity.

AIMS: To study the level of cytokines interleukin (IL)1β, IL-33, IL-6, tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α, and total IgE in the blood serum of overweight/obese children with intermittent and persistent AR.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional observational study analyzed 69 children aged 7–10 years with AR in the remission period and was conducted from November 2020 to February 2021. All children went through a comprehensive examination for 3 days, including the definition of the serum concentrations IL-1β, IL-33, IL-6, TNF-α, and total IgE. Before blood sampling, children did not use nasal glucocorticosteroids, antileukotriene drugs for the last 4 weeks, and antihistamines for the last 7 days. Bioimpedansometry was used to assess the body weight by calculating the %FM (percentage of body fat mass).

RESULTS: The study included 44 children with AR and overweight/obesity (group I) and 25 children with AR and normal body weight (group II). The analysis of AR showed that in group I, intermittent AR was detected in 11 (25.0%) children (subgroup IA), whereas a persistent course was found in 33 children (75.0%) (subgroup IB). In group II, intermittent AR was detected in 13 (52.0%) children (subgroup IIA), whereas persistent AR in 12 children (48.0%) (subgroup IIB). The level of IL-1β in the blood serum was significantly higher in the subgroup IB than in subgroup IA (p=0.009). The concentration of IL-33 in children with persistent AR and obesity was significantly lower than that in children with intermittent AR and obesity (p=0.039). The level of IL-33 in the serum negatively correlated with %FM in group IA (r=-0.6673, p=0.035). The concentration of IL-1β negatively correlated with %FM in group IIB (r=-0,738, p=0,037). The levels of IL-6, TNF, and total IgE in obese children did not depend on the severity of AR.

CONCLUSIONS: The predictors of persistent AR in children with obesity are a decrease in the level of IL-33 and an increase in IL-1β in the blood serum. The negative correlation between the degree of obesity and IL-33 concentration in children with intermittent AR opens a window of opportunity for the personified management of children with AR and comorbid obesity.

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About the authors

Anna E. Koroleva

Smolensk State Medical University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2655-1284
SPIN-code: 6007-1896


Russian Federation, Smolensk

Vladimir V. Bekezin

Smolensk State Medical University

ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9141-5348
SPIN-code: 2518-3769

MD, Dr. Sci. (Med.), Professor

Russian Federation, Smolensk

Irina N. Sergeeva

Smolensk Regional Children’s Clinical Hospital

ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8863-1103
Russian Federation, Smolensk

Elena A. Volkova

Children’s Clinical Hospital

Russian Federation, Smolensk

Raisa Ya. Meshkova

Smolensk State Medical University; Smolensk Clinical Hospital № 1

ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7806-9484
SPIN-code: 8937-1230

MD, Dr. Sci. (Med.), Professor

Russian Federation, Smolensk; Smolensk


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Supplementary files

Supplementary Files
1. Fig. 1. %FM in subgroups of children with allergic rhinitis.

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2. Fig. 2. Correlation analysis of the level of the studied cytokines with %FM in children with allergic rhinitis.Note: rxy ― Pearson’s correlation coefficient; rs ― Spearman’s correlation coefficient; R2 ― determination coefficient.

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