Plasma lipocalin-2/NGAL is stable over 12 weeks and is not modulated by exercise or dieting

Michael E. Nakai, Joshua Denham, Priscilla R. Prestes, Nina Eikelis, Elisabeth A. Lambert, Nora E. Straznicky, Markus P. Schlaich, Murray D. Esler, Brendan J. O’Brien, Fadi J. Charchar, Gavin W. Lambert, Francine Z. Marques

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8 Citations (Scopus)


Amongst other immune cells, neutrophils play a key role in systemic inflammation leading to cardiovascular disease and can release inflammatory factors, including lipocalin-2 (LCN2). LCN2 drives cardiac hypertrophy and plays a role in maladaptive remodelling of the heart and has been associated with renal injury. While lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise are known to attenuate low-grade inflammation, their ability to modulate plasma LCN2 levels is unknown. Forty-eight endurance athletes and 52 controls (18–55 years) underwent measurement for various cardiovascular health indicators, along with plasma LCN2 concentration. No significant difference in LCN2 concentration was seen between the two groups. LCN2 was a very weak predictor or absent from models describing blood pressures or predicting athlete status. In another cohort, 57 non-diabetic overweight or obese men and post-menopausal women who fulfilled Adult Treatment Panel III metabolic syndrome criteria were randomly allocated into either a control, modified Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet, or DASH and exercise group. Pre- and post-intervention demographic, cardiovascular health indicators, and plasma LCN2 expression were measured in each individual. While BMI fell in intervention groups, LCN2 levels remained unchanged within and between all groups, as illustrated by strong correlations between LCN2 concentrations pre- and 12 weeks post-intervention (r = 0.743, P < 0.0001). This suggests that circulating LCN2 expression are stable over a period of at least 12 weeks and is not modifiable by diet and exercise.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4056
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


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