Serum adiponectin levels in adults with Prader-Willi syndrome are independent of anthropometrical parameters and do not change with GH treatment

Charlotte Hoybye, Jens M Bruun, Bjorn Richelsen, Allan Flyvbjerg, Jan Frystyk
European Journal of Endocrinology 2004, 151 (4): 457-61

OBJECTIVE: Obesity and growth hormone (GH) deficiency are common in Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) and these patients are at risk of metabolic diseases in adult life and of reduced life span. Low adiponectin values are associated with obesity and the metabolic syndrome. We therefore found it of interest to measure adiponectin levels in PWS.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: 17 adults, nine men and eight women, 17 to 32 years of age, with a mean body mass index (BMI) of 35+/-3.2 kg/m2 participated. All had clinical PWS. They were randomized to treatment with placebo or GH (Genotropin) for six months, and subsequently all received GH for 12 months. At baseline, serum total adiponectin levels in the PWS patients were compared with 25 lean and 34 obese controls. Body composition and various metabolic parameters, including adiponectin, were studied every six months in the PWS group.

RESULTS: Serum adiponectin levels in PWS subjects were significantly lower (P<0.001) compared with lean and significantly higher (P<0.001) compared with obese controls. In PWS patients, no correlation was found between adiponectin and anthropometrical parameters or measures of insulin sensitivity (e.g. fasting insulin and insulin sensitivity as estimated by the homeostasis model assessment), or between adiponectin and IGF binding protein-1 or IGF-I. Adiponectin did not change during GH intervention.

CONCLUSION: In this study of adults with PWS serum total adiponectin levels were higher than in controls with simple obesity and were independent of anthropometrical parameters. In accordance with this the metabolic syndrome is not necessarily present in all PWS patients. Correction of GH deficiency had no effect on serum adiponectin levels.

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