Decreased expression levels of Nurr1 are associated with chronic inflammation in patients with type 2 diabetes

Yancheng Xu, Ying Xu, Qi Huang, Wenfang Zhang, Yaping Wang, Qingling Zeng, Chunyan He, Junli Xue, Jin Chen, Xuemei Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Chronic inflammation is associated with insulin resistance, a characteristic of type 2 diabetes (T2D). Nuclear receptor-related protein 1 (Nurr1) can regulate inflammation, dependent on the nature of individual diseases. However, whether Nurr1 regulates chronic inflammation during the pathogenic process of T2D in humans remains to be fully elucidated. The present study aimed to investigate the potential association between the expression of Nurr1 in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and inflammation in patients with T2D. The levels of plasma tumor necrosis factor (TNF)α and interleukin (IL)-6, the relative expression levels of Nurr1, and glycogen synthase kinase (GSK)-3β phosphorylation in PBMCs from 40 patients with T2D and 40 healthy controls (HC group) were examined, and their potential association with clinical measures were analyzed. The expression levels of Nurr1, induced by high glucose and palmitic acid, were assessed in the PBMCs from the HC group. Compared with the HC group, significantly higher levels of plasma TNFa and IL-6 were correlated positively with the degree of insulin resistance in the T2D patients. However, significantly lower expression levels of Nurr1 and GSK-3β phosphorylation in the PBMCs were correlated negatively with the levels of TNFa, IL-6, fasting insulin and insulin resistance in the T2D patients. Treatment of the PBMCs with high glucose or palmitic acid inhibited the expression of Nurr1 in a dose-and time-dependent manner. Therefore, decreased expression levels of Nurr1 were associated with chronic inflammation and insulin resistance in patients with T2D.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5487-5493
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular Medicine Reports
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015


  • Chronic inflammation
  • Insulin resistance
  • Nurr1
  • Type 2 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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