Background: Sickle cell hemoglobinopathies are amongst a group of genetic disorders resulting from a single basepair DNA mutation at the β chain of hemoglobin. Chemokines and cytokines play a part in the pathogenesis of inflammatory and infectious diseases. They are also involved in balancing angiogenesis/angiostasis processes to form new vascular networks. We aimed the present study to measure the circulating CXC chemokines CXCL1, CXCL9, CXCL10, and CXCL12 in the plasma of sickle cell patients (SCD).
Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted at the Kerman Special Disease Center and Rafsanjan Molecular Medicine Research Center during 2010 to 2011. Peripheral blood specimens were collected from 77 children with SCD and 70 controls. Serum samples were isolated and CXCL1, CXCL9, CXCL10, and CXCL12 were measured using ELISA.
Results: The findings of this study demonstrated that serum concentrations of CXCL1 and CXCL12 were elevated in SCD patients when compared with controls. Results also showed that the circulating levels of CXCL9 and CXCL10 were decreased in SCD patients in comparison to control subjects. However, we found increased levels of CXC chemokines in SCD patients suffering from pain crisis but the difference was not significant.
Conclusions: According to the results of this study it can probably be concluded that the balance between angiogenesis/angiostasis CXC chemokines is an important predictive factor for initiation of complications in SCD patients. The elevated level of pro-inflammatory CXC chemokines may also be related to inflammatory responses associated with SCD complication.