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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

Published in Association with the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM)

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Mediterranean diet and plasma concentration of inflammatory markers in old and very old subjects in the ZINCAGE population study

George V. Dedoussis1a / Stavroula Kanoni2a / Erminia Mariani3 / Luca Cattini4 / Georges Herbein5 / Tamas Fulop6 / Audrey Varin7 / Lothar Rink8 / Jolanta Jajte9 / Daniela Monti10 / Fiorela Marcellini11 / Marco Malavolta12 / Eugenio Mocchegiani13

1Department of Nutrition Science and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, Athens, Greece

2Department of Nutrition Science and Dietetics, Harokopio University of Athens, Athens, Greece

3Laboratory of Immunology and Genetics, Istituto di Ricerca Codivilla-Putti, Bologna, Italy and Department of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

4Laboratory of Immunology and Genetics, Istituto di Ricerca Codivilla-Putti, Bologna, Italy and Department of Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

5Department of Virology, Franche-Comte University, Besançon, France

6Research Center on Aging, Immunology Program, Geriatric Division, Faculty of Medicine, University of Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada

7Department of Virology, Franche-Comte University, Besançon, France

8Institute of Immunology, RWTH-Aachen, Aachen, Germany

9Department of Toxicology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Medical University of Lodz, Lodz, Poland

10Department of Pathology and Oncology, University of Florence, Florence, Italy

11Immunology Centre (Section: Nutrition, Immunity and Ageing), Research Department INRCA, Ancona, Italy

12Immunology Centre (Section: Nutrition, Immunity and Ageing), Research Department INRCA, Ancona, Italy

13Immunology Centre (Section: Nutrition, Immunity and Ageing), Research Department INRCA, Ancona, Italy

Corresponding author: George V. Dedoussis, PhD, Assistant Professor of Biology, Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Laboratory of Molecular Genetics, Harokopio University of Athens, 70 El. Venizelou str, 17671 Kallithea-Athens, Greece Phone: +30-210-9549304, Fax: +30-210-9577050,

Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. Volume 46, Issue 7, Pages 990–996, ISSN (Online) 1437-4331, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: 10.1515/CCLM.2008.191, May 2008

Publication History

Received:
2007-12-12
Accepted:
2008-03-20
Published Online:
2008-05-22

Abstract

Background: Aging is associated with low-grade elevation of circulating inflammatory markers, leading to increased risk of morbidity and mortality. The Mediterranean diet has been suggested as a determinant of longevity. In the current study, we investigated the impact of the Mediterranean diet on inflammatory status in old subjects.

Methods: Within the ZINCAGE study, 957 healthy old subjects (≥60 years old) from five European countries were recruited. Plasma interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, monocyte chemoattractant protein, tumor necrosis factor-α, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) and erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) were measured. Dietary data were collected applying a food frequency questionnaire and were used to estimate adherence to the Mediterranean diet.

Results: The Italians presented the greatest adherence to the Mediterranean diet, while the Polish the poorest. In females, higher diet score was significantly associated with lower body mass index and ESR and higher HDL-C levels (β=−0.127, p=0.003; β=−0.144, p=0.001; β=0.144, p=0.029, respectively). In males, diet score was negatively associated with IL-8 levels (β=−0.101, p=0.044). The Mediterranean diet was associated with reduced IL-8 concentrations in Greeks (β=−0.213, p=0.007).

Conclusions: There were significant effects of the components of the Mediterranean diet on inflammation markers. The Mediterranean diet score is useful in assessing nutritional influence on immune status.

Clin Chem Lab Med 2008;46:990–6.

Keywords: elderly; inflammatory markers; Mediterranean diet; ZINCAGE study

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