[Adipokines: adiponectin, leptin, resistin and coronary heart disease risk].Przegl Lek 2005; 62 Suppl 3:69-72PL
Visceral obesity is among the known risk factors of atherosclerotic cardiovascular diseases. As long as adipose tissue was considered only an inert store of excess energy, accumulated in triglycerides, explanation of the mechanisms causing increased cardiovascular risk in obesity was difficult. Finding that the adipose tissue is an active endocrine organ and that the adipokines secreted in it influence several metabolic processes, allowed better understanding of this correlation. Several disturbances in secretion, function and balance of adipokines occur in the course of obesity. Changes of adiponectin, leptin and resistin concentrations are among the reasons of accelerated atherosclerosis occurring in the visceral adiposity. Adiponectin concentrations are decreased in visceral adiposity. Adiponectin is adipokine possessing antiatherogenic properties. It's effects exerted though the specific receptors in skeletal muscles and liver include decreased insulin resistance and improved plasma lipid profile. Acting directly in the vessel wall adiponectin prevents development of atheromatic lesions by inhibiting production of adhesive molecules and formation of foam cells. It has been found that decreased adiponectin concentrations are connected not only with increased coronary risk but also with progression of atherosclerosis in coronary vessels. Moreover it was found that adiponectin plasma concentration is significantly decreased in acute coronary incidences. Leptin regulates energy metabolism and balance. The concentrations of this adipokine are increased in obesity and correlate with insulin resistance. Hiperleptinemia has been also recognized as cardiovascular diseases risk factor. Resistin is considered to be a substance increasing insulin resistance, however the exact mechanisms are not known. Resistin plasma concentrations are increased in obese subjects and correlate with the inflammatory state that underlies the initiation and progression of atherosclerotic lesions. Correlation between resistin concentration and the extent of atherosclerotic plaques in the coronary vessels has also been found. The disturbances in secretion, function and balance of adiponectin, leptin and resistin are to be considered not only a link between visceral adiposity and cardiovascular risk but also independent risk factor of coronary heart disease.