Increased total fat mass (FM) and visceral fat (VF) may account in part for age-associated decrease in hepatic insulin action. This study determined whether preventing the changes in body fat distribution abolished this defect throughout aging. We studied the F(1) hybrid of Brown Norway-Fischer 344 rats (n = 29), which we assigned to caloric restriction (CR) or fed ad libitum (AL). CR (55% of the calories consumed by AL) was initiated and used at 2 mo to prevent age-dependent increases in FM and VF. AL rats were studied at 2, 8, and 20 mo; CR rats were studied at 8 and 20 mo. VF and FM remained unchanged throughout aging in CR rats. AL-fed rats at 8 and 20 mo had over fourfold higher FM and VF compared with both CR groups. Insulin clamp studies (3 mU. kg(-1). min(-1) with somatostatin) were performed to assess hepatic insulin sensitivity. Prevention of fat accretion resulted in a marked improvement in insulin action in the suppression of hepatic glucose production (HGP) (6.3 +/- 0.3 and 7.2 +/- 1.2 mg. kg(-1). min(-1) in 8- and 20-mo CR rats vs. 8.3 +/- 0.5 and 10.8 +/- 0.9 mg. kg(-1). min(-1) in 8- and 20-mo AL rats, respectively). The rate of gluconeogenesis (by enrichment of hepatic uridine diphosphate glucose and phosphoenolpyruvate pools by [(14)C]lactate) was unchanged in all groups. The improvement in hepatic insulin action in the CR group was mostly due to effective suppression of glycogenolysis (4.4 +/- 0.3 and 4.9 +/- 0.3 mg. kg(-1). min(-1) in 8- and 20-mo CR rats vs. 5.8 +/- 0.6 and 8.2 +/- 1.0 mg. kg(-1). min(-1) in 8- and 20-mo AL rats, respectively). The results demonstrated the preservation of hepatic insulin action in aging CR rats. Therefore, body fat and its distribution are major determinants of age-associated hepatic insulin resistance.
Being overweight or obese is associated with a greater risk of coronary heart disease and stroke compared with normal weight. The role of the specific adipose tissue-derived substances, called adipocytokines, in overweight- and obesity-related cardiovascular disease (CVD) is still unclear.
To investigate the associations of three adipose tissue-derived substances: adiponectin, leptin, and interleukin-6 with incident CVD in a longitudinal population-based study, including extensive adjustments for traditional and metabolic risk factors closely associated with overweight and obesity. C-reactive protein (CRP) was used as a proxy for interleukin-6.
Prospective population-based study of 6.502 participants, 51.9% women, aged 30-60 years, free of CVD at baseline, with a mean follow-up time of 11.4 years, equivalent to 74,123 person-years of follow-up. As outcome, we defined a composite outcome comprising of the first event of fatal and nonfatal coronary heart disease and fatal and nonfatal stroke.
During the follow-up period, 453 composite CV outcomes occurred among participants with complete datasets. In models, including gender, age, smoking status, systolic blood pressure, treatment for hypertension, diabetes, body mass index (BMI), total cholesterol, high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance, estimated glomerular filtration rate, adiponectin, leptin, and CRP, neither adiponectin (hazard ratio [HR] with 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.97 [0.87-1.08] per SD increase, P = 0.60) nor leptin (0.97 [0.85-1.12] per SD increase, P = 0.70) predicted the composite outcome, whereas CRP was significantly associated with the composite outcome (1.19 [1.07-1.35] per SD increase, P = 0.002). Furthermore, in mediation analysis, adjusted for age and sex, CRP decreased the BMI-associated CV risk by 43% (95%CI 29-72).
In this study, neither adiponectin nor leptin were independently associated with CVD, raising questions over their role in CVD. The finding that CRP was significantly associated with an increased risk of CVD and decreased the BMI-associated CVD risk substantially, could imply that interleukin-6-related pathways may play a role in mediating overweight- and obesity-related CVD.
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Adiposity and adipocyte-derived cytokines have been implicated in prostate carcinogenesis. However, the relationship of adipokine gene variants with prostate cancer risk has not been thoroughly investigated. We therefore examined common variants of the IL6, LEP, LEPR, TNF and ADIPOQ genes in relation to prostate cancer in a case-control study nested within a large cohort of Finnish men. The study sample consisted of 1,053 cases of prostate cancer, diagnosed over an average 11 years of follow up, and 1,053 controls matched to the cases on age, intervention group and date of baseline blood draw. Logistic regression was used to model the relative odds of prostate cancer. We also examined genotypes in relation to serum insulin, IGF-1 and IGF-1:IGFBP-3 among 196 controls. Variant alleles at three loci (-14858A>G, -13973A>C, -13736C>A) in a potential regulatory region of the LEP gene conferred a statistically significant 20% reduced risk of prostate cancer. For example, at the -14858A>G locus, heterozygotes and homozygotes for the A allele had an odds ratio (OR) of prostate cancer of 0.76 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.62, 0.93] and 0.79 (95% CI 0.60, 1.04), respectively. At 13288G>A, relative to the GG genotype, the AA genotype was associated with a suggestive increased risk of prostate cancer (OR = 1.29; 95% CI 0.99,1.67; p(trend) = 0.05). Polymorphisms in the IL6, LEPR, TNF and ADIPOQ genes were not associated with prostate cancer. Allelic variants in the LEP gene are related to prostate cancer risk, supporting a role for leptin in prostate carcinogenesis.
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Knowledge of adipose composition in relation to mortality may help delineate inconsistent relationships between obesity and mortality in old age. We evaluated relationships between abdominal visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) density, mortality, biomarkers, and characteristics.
VAT and SAT density were determined from computed tomography scans in persons aged 65 and older, Health ABC (n = 2,735) and AGES-Reykjavik (n = 5,131), and 24 nonhuman primates (NHPs). Associations between adipose density and mortality (4-13 years follow-up) were assessed with Cox proportional hazards models. In NHPs, adipose density was related to serum markers and tissue characteristics.
Higher density adipose tissue was associated with mortality in both studies with adjustment for risk factors including adipose area, total fat, and body mass index. In women, hazard ratio and 95% CI for the densest quintile (Q5) versus least dense (Q1) for VAT density were 1.95 (1.36-2.80; Health ABC) and 1.88 (1.31-2.69; AGES-Reykjavik) and for SAT density, 1.76 (1.35-2.28; Health ABC) and 1.56 (1.15-2.11; AGES-Reykjavik). In men, VAT density was associated with mortality in Health ABC, 1.52 (1.12-2.08), whereas SAT density was associated with mortality in both Health ABC, 1.58 (1.21-2.07), and AGES-Reykjavik, 1.43 (1.07-1.91). Higher density adipose tissue was associated with smaller adipocytes in NHPs. There were no consistent associations with inflammation in any group. Higher density adipose tissue was associated with lower serum leptin in Health ABC and NHPs, lower leptin mRNA expression in NHPs, and higher serum adiponectin in Health ABC and NHPs.
VAT and SAT density provide a unique marker of mortality risk that does not appear to be inflammation related.
Helicobacter pylori are bacteria that have coevolved with humans to be transmitted from person to person and to persistently colonize the stomach. Their population structure is a model for the ecology of the indigenous microbiota. A well-choreographed equilibrium between bacterial effectors and host responses permits microbial persistence and health of the host but confers risk of serious diseases, including peptic ulceration and gastric neoplasia.
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BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Leptin, an important hormone for body weight regulation, may be involved in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular manifestations of obesity. We tested whether leptin may be an independent risk marker for stroke in a case-referent study. METHODS: Definitive acute stroke events, defined by MONICA criteria, were identified from October 1, 1995 to April 30, 1999. Referents without known cardiovascular disease were randomly selected from a population census. Patient characteristics were taken from hospital files and leptin was analyzed in stored samples. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine possible differences in leptin levels between groups. RESULTS: One hundred and thirty-seven cases with ischemic stroke and 69 cases with hemorrhagic stroke were identified. In comparison with referents, male patients with stroke had significantly higher leptin levels. Both male and female stroke patients had increased blood pressure compared with the referents. In multivariate analyses, high leptin levels were associated with both ischemic (OR = 4.89; 95% CI: 1.89-12.62) and hemorrhagic (OR = 3.86; 95% CI: 1.13-13.16) stroke in men, and with ischemic stroke in women (OR = 4.10; 95% CI: 1.45-11.62). The combination of high leptin levels and increased blood pressure (systolic or diastolic) was associated with a strong positive interaction in males with hemorrhagic stroke. CONCLUSION: Leptin may be an important link for the development of cerebrovascular disease in the insulin resistance syndrome in men.
Obesity has been associated with an increased prevalence of asthma and poorer control of this disease. However, the mechanisms by which obesity can influence airway function and make asthma more difficult to control remain uncertain. The physiological changes associated with obesity can contribute to respiratory symptoms and these should be differentiated from those caused by asthma. Obesity can possibly influence the development of asthma through genetic, developmental, hormonal, neurogenic or mechanical influences. Breathing at low lung volumes and changes in the pattern of breathing in obese subjects may alter airway smooth muscle plasticity and airway function. The release by adipocytes of various cytokines and mediators such as Interleukin-6, TNF-alpha, eotaxin, and leptin, and the reduction of anti-inflammatory adipokines in obese subjects may possibly contribute to the development or increased clinical expression of asthma in promoting airway inflammation. Reduced asthma control and impaired response to asthma therapy have been reported in obese patients. Obesity-related co-morbidities such as Sleep Apnea and Gastro-esophageal reflux may also contribute to this poor control. Weight loss improves asthma control and reduces medication needs. Research is needed to better define the optimal management of obese asthmatic patients.
Obesity, a risk factor for colorectal cancer, is associated with elevated serum levels of leptin, the adipocyte-derived hormone, and insulin. Experimental and epidemiologic studies have indicated a role for insulin in the pathogenesis of colon cancer, and recent experimental studies have suggested a similar role for leptin. In a case-control study nested in the Janus Biobank, Norway, we measured serum levels of leptin and C-peptide (a marker of pancreatic insulin secretion) in cryopreserved prediagnostic sera from men (median age, 45 years) who were diagnosed with cancer of the colon (n = 235) or rectum (n = 143) after blood collection (median time, 17 years), and among 378 controls matched for age and date of blood collection. Conditional logistic regression analyses showed an approximately 3-fold increase in colon cancer risk with increasing concentrations of leptin up to an odds ratio (OR) of 2.72 (95% CI = 1.44-5.12) for top vs. bottom quartile (p(trend) = 0.008). The corresponding OR for C-peptide was 1.81 (95% CI = 0.67-4.86; p(trend) = 0.19). The risk estimates remained unchanged after mutual adjustment. No association of hormone levels with rectal cancer risk was found. Reproducibility of hormone measurements assessed by intraclass coefficients (ICCs) for paired samples taken 1 year apart was high for leptin (ICC = 0.82) but lower for C-peptide (ICC = 0.30). Our results suggest that leptin is a risk factor for colon cancer, and that leptin may provide a link between obesity and colon cancer. Leptin may be directly involved in colon tumorigenesis or it may serve as a sensitive and robust marker of an obesity-induced adverse endocrine environment. Only weak support for an association of insulin with colon cancer was found.
A photoperiod with a short photophase induces a winterlike phenotype in Siberian hamsters that includes a progressive decrease in food intake and body mass and reproductive organ regression, as well as reversible hypothermia in the form of short-duration torpor. Torpor substantially reduces energy utilization and is not initiated until body mass, fat stores, and serum leptin concentrations are at their nadir. Because photoperiod-dependent torpor is delayed until fat reserves are lowest, leptin concentrations may be a permissive factor for torpor onset. This conjecture was tested by implanting osmotic minipumps into Siberian hamsters manifesting spontaneous torpor; the animals received a constant release of leptin or vehicle for 14 days. Exogenous leptin treatment eliminated torpor in a significant proportion of treated hamsters, whereas treatment with the vehicle did not. Similarly, endogenous serum leptin concentrations were markedly reduced in all animals undergoing daily torpor. Although simply reducing leptin concentrations below a threshold value is not sufficient for torpor initiation, reduced leptin concentrations nevertheless appear necessary for its occurrence. It is proposed that drastically reduced leptin concentrations provide a "starvation signal" to an as yet unidentified central mechanism mediating torpor initiation.
Recent studies have suggested that the adipocyte-derived hormone, leptin, plays a role in the regulation of metabolism. Here, we tested this hypothesis in the seasonally breeding Siberian hamster, as this species exhibits profound seasonal changes in adiposity and circulating leptin concentrations driven by the annual photoperiodic cycle. Male hamsters were kept in either long (LD) or short (SD) photoperiods. Following exposure to short photoperiods for 8 weeks animals exhibited a significant weight-loss and a 16-fold reduction of serum leptin concentrations. At Week 9, animals in both photoperiods were infused with leptin or PBS via osmotic mini-pump for 14 days. Chronic leptin infusion mimicked LD-like concentrations in SD-housed animals and caused a further decline in body weight and adipose tissue. In LD-housed animals, leptin infusion resulted in a significant elevation of serum concentrations above natural LD-like levels, but had no discernable effect on body weight or overall adiposity. Both bending and compression characteristics and histomorphometric measurements of trabecular bone mass were unaltered by leptin treatment or photoperiod. Our data therefore show that despite a high natural amplitude cycle of leptin, this hormone has no apparent role in the regulation of bone metabolism, and therefore do not support recent propositions that this hormone is an important component in the metabolism of bone tissue.