Ghrelin and its Association with Nutritional and Inflammatory Status of Patients on Maintenance Hemodialysis in a South Indian Tertiary Care Hospital

  • RN Vanitha
  • S Kavimani
  • P Soundararajan
  • D Chamundeeswari
  • G Kannan
  • S Rengarajan
Keywords: Appetite, Ghrelin, Hemodialysis, Inflammation, Nutritional status

Abstract

Background: Malnutrition and inflammation are associated with morbidity and mortality in patients on maintenance hemodialysis (MHD). Ghrelin, an orexigenic peptide hormone, is speculated to be associated with nutritional and inflammatory status in MHD. Aim: To assess the serum total ghrelin levels and its possible relationship with inflammation and nutritional status in patients on MHD.
Subjects and Methods: The study was conducted on 90 patients on MHD for 6 months and above (56 males, 34 females, mean age 52.6 [11.7] years; mean dialysis vintage 20.9 [12.1] months) and 70 healthy volunteers as control (5 males, 25 females, mean age 50.6 [9.7] years). Demographics were obtained for the study population, and dialysis‑related data were collected for cases. Anthropometry, biochemical parameters, serum total ghrelin and inflammatory markers tumor necrosis factor‑alpha (TNF‑α), and high‑sensitivity C‑reactive protein (hsCRP) were assessed for cases and control. Self‑reported appetite (five questions of appetite and diet assessment tool) and nutritional status (subjective global assessment‑dialysis malnutrition score) were assessed for cases.
Results: Ghrelin (242.5 [62.3] pg/mL vs. 80.2 [19.6] pg/mL; P < 0.001), TNF‑α (39.8 [15.2] pg/mL vs. 6.5 [1.2] pg/mL; P < 0.001), hsCRP (10.2 [2.8] mg/L vs. 2.7 [0.54] mg/L; P < 0.001) were significantly elevated in cases versus control, anthropometry, and biochemical parameters were significantly decreased in hemodialysis patient. Of 90 cases, (13/90 [14.4%]) were well‑nourished, (28/90 [31%]) mild to moderately malnourished, and (49/90 [54.4%]) were moderate to severely malnourished. Appetite was very good for 14.4%, good and fair for 47.8%, poor and very poor for 37.8% patients. There was a significant difference in appetite with respect to nutritional status (P < 0.001). Ghrelin had positive correlation with inflammatory markers and negative correlation with nutritional status (P < 0.001).
Conclusion: The study identified the association of ghrelin with appetite, nutritional, and inflammatory status of the patients on MHD.

Keywords: Appetite, Ghrelin, Hemodialysis, Inflammation, Nutritional status

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