Correlates of ghrelin and visfatin in metabolic syndrome patients with and without prediabetes

  • Heba Salah Abushahla
  • Nailya Bulatova
  • Violet KasabriEmail author
  • Randa Naffa
Original Article


Ghrelin is deregulated in obesity-associated insulin resistance (IR) while visfatin features a role in glucose uptake regulation, inflammation and IR. This study aimed to conduct comparisons and correlations of ghrelin and visfatin plasma levels in nondiabetic metabolic syndrome (MetS) and MetS-prediabetic/type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients. In a cross-sectional study of 30 normoglycemic lean subjects (control), 31 MetS subjects, and 30 MetS-prediabetic/T2DM, plasma ghrelin and visfatin were measured by colorimetric-enzymatic assays. The comparison of both biomarkers between study groups and the correlation between them as well as with participants’ adiposity, hematologic, and atherogenicity indices were conducted. Ghrelin levels (pg/mL) lacked any statistically significant difference between each of nondiabetic MetS (618.10 ± 93.22, p = 0.103) or MetS-pre/T2DM (498.17 ± 103.21, p = 0.454) vs. the normoglycemic lean control (369.38 ± 111.76). Visfatin level (ng/mL) in MetS patients with pre/T2DM (19.24 ± 2.05, p = 0.003) or without pre/T2DM (18.43 ± 1.83, p = 0.002) was significantly higher as compared to healthy controls’ (8.62 ± 2.23). There was a direct ghrelin-visfatin correlation in the whole study population as well as in both MetS and MetS-pre/T2DM arms (p < 0.001). In nondiabetic MetS patients, ghrelin and visfatin proportionally correlated with waist/hip ratio (WHR; p = 0.032 vs. p = 0.008, respectively) while ghrelin correlated directly with BMI (p = 0.034). In MetS-pre/T2DM, visfatin correlated directly with body adiposity index (p = 0.039) but inversely with WHR (p = 0.011), while ghrelin and visfatin directly correlated with mean platelet volume (p = 0.025 vs. p = 0.030, respectively) and ghrelin proportionally correlated with platelet/lymphocyte ratio (p = 0.034). In effect, ghrelin and visfatin molecular interplays with adiposity and blood indices in the MetS derangements may present potential pharmacotherapeutic targets in metabolism and prediabetes anomalies.


Visfatin Ghrelin Prediabetes Metabolic syndrome 



We sincerely thank all patients who participated in the study.

Funding information

The research was funded by the Deanship of Academic Research & Quality Assurance, The University of Jordan.

Compliance with ethical standards

An informed consent was obtained from all included subjects. The study started after obtaining approval from the Scientific Research Committee at the School of Pharmacy, the Deanship of Academic Research, the University of Jordan and approval from the JUH Institutional Review Board (IRB) committee.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Research Society for Study of Diabetes in India 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Schools of Pharmacy and MedicineUniversity of JordanAmmanJordan

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