Scientific publications

Adiponectin-leptin ratio: A promising index to estimate adipose tissue dysfunction. Relation with obesity-associated cardiometabolic risk

Jan 1, 2018 | Magazine: Adipocyte

Frühbeck G (1,2,3,4), Catalán V (1,2,3), Rodríguez A (1,2,3), Gómez-Ambrosi J (1,2,3).

(1a) Metabolic Research Laboratory , Clínica Universidad de Navarra , Pamplona , Spain.
(2b) CIBER Fisiopatología de la Obesidad y Nutrición (CIBEROBN) , Instituto de Salud Carlos III , Pamplona , Spain.
(3c) Obesity and Adipobiology Group , Instituto de Investigación Sanitaria de Navarra (IdiSNA) Pamplona , Spain.
(4d) Department of Endocrinology & Nutrition , Clínica Universidad de Navarra , Pamplona , Spain.


Obesity is currently the most extended metabolic disturbance worldwide favoring the development of cardiometabolic alterations such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia.

Obesity and the metabolic syndrome (MS) are characterized by an increase in circulating leptin concentrations, in parallel to a decrease in blood levels of adiponectin. Consequently, the adiponectin/leptin ratio has been suggested as a maker of adipose tissue dysfunction.

This emerging biomarker correlates with insulin resistance better than adiponectin or leptin alone, or even HOMA and is decreased with increasing number of metabolic risk factors having been proposed as a predictive marker for the MS. Moreover, the adiponectin/leptin ratio is negatively correlated with markers of low-grade chronic inflammation.

In this sense, an increase in this ratio has been related with reduced atherosclerosis risk as well as with a decreased risk of some types of cancer in epidemiological studies. In this commentary we propose new cutoffs to estimate obesity- and MS-associated cardiometabolic risk according to the adiponectin/leptin ratio and discuss different therapeutic strategies to increase this promising biomarker of metabolic risk.

CITATION  Adipocyte. 2018 Jan 2;7(1):57-62. doi: 10.1080/21623945.2017.1402151. Epub 2017 Dec 5