- Marialaura Bonaccio1,*,
- Augusto Di Castelnuovo2,
- George Pounis3,
- Amalia De Curtis3,
- Simona Costanzo3,
- Mariarosaria Persichillo3,
- Chiara Cerletti3,
- Maria Benedetta Donati3,
- Giovanni de Gaetano3 and
- Licia Iacoviello3
- 1 IRCCS Istituto Neurologico Mediterraneo NEUROMED;
- 2 Fondazione Giovanni Paolo II, Catholic University, Campobasso;
- 3 IRCCS Istituto Neurologico Mediterraneo Neuromed
- ↵* Corresponding author; email:
Low-grade inflammation is associated with increased risk of chronic degenerative disease but its relationship with mortality is less explored. We aimed at evaluating, at a large epidemiological level, the possible association of low-grade inflammation, as measured by a composite score, with overall mortality risk. We conducted a population-based prospective investigation on 20,337 adult subjects free from major haematological disease and acute inflammatory status, randomly recruited from the general population of the Moli-sani study. A low-grade inflammation score was obtained from the sum of 10-tiles of plasmatic (C-reactive protein) and cellular (leukocyte and platelet counts, granulocyte/lymphocyte ratio) biomarkers of low-grade inflammation; higher levels indicated increased low- grade inflammation. Hazard ratios were calculated using multivariable Cox-proportional hazard models with 95% confidence intervals. At the end of follow-up (median 7.6 years), 837 all-cause deaths were recorded. As compared to subjects in the lowest quartile of the low-grade inflammation score, those in the highest category had a significant increased risk in overall mortality (HR=1.44; 1.17-1.77) independently of possible confounders, including presence of chronic diseases and a number of health-related behaviours. The magnitude of the association of low-grade inflammation with mortality was relatively higher in type 2 diabetic patients (HR=2.90; 1.74-4.84) and in individuals with history of cardiovascular disease (HR=2.48; 1.50-4.11) as compared to their counterparts free from the disease. In conclusion, an elevated degree of low-grade inflammation , as measured by a composite score of inflammatory biomarkers, is an independent risk factor for total mortality in an apparently healthy adult general population.
- Received February 5, 2016.
- Accepted July 26, 2016.
- Copyright © 2016, Ferrata Storti Foundation