Gender Differences in a Hormone Related to Obesity

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CONFERENCE: Posters-at-the-Capitol

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Wagoner, Tom; Newlin, Katy
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The CDC ranks Kentucky fifth in levels of adult obesity. Adiponectin is secreted from fat cells and associated with obesity. In this study, we quantified blood levels in normal male and female rats and compared levels in different adipose tissue locations (visceral, inguinal and interscapular white and brown adipose tissue) between genders. Blood adiponectin in females (9.4 ± 0.6mg/ml, N = 4) was significantly (P < 0.01) greater than in males (4.4 ± 0.8mg/ml, N = 5). Tissue level of adiponectin did not differ between adipose tissue sites within a gender, but was different in fat locations between genders. Levels of adiponectin in the visceral fat pad of males was 2.5 times higher than in females (P < 0.01). A comparable difference was found for the inguinal fat depot, with the level of adiponectin in male tissue over 3 times higher than females (P < 0.02). The results indicate that there are prominent gender-based differences in both serum adiponectin and in the fat depot content of this adipokine. However, the tissue adiponectin concentrations were reversed compared to the serum levels. The serum data are in agreement with studies in the literature, but the observations of tissue adiponectin and its relationship to serum levels poses other questions related to synthesis and release of adiponectin. This data suggests that adiponectin may produce differential gender effects in relation to obesity and other diseases like diabetes. (This study was supported by grants from the Office of the Executive Vice-President for Research).