Hypoadiponectinemia and Cancers

Low levels of plasma adiponectin are closely correlated with several obesity- and insulin resistance-related cancers. A strong inverse association between plasma adiponectin levels and the risk of both breast cancer and endometrial cancer has recently been reported in two case-control studies (99,100). Importantly, these associations are independent of adiposity, insulin resistance, and other classical risk factors. Another study by Miyoshi et al. has shown that breast cancers arising in women with low adiponectin levels are more likely to show a biologically aggressive phenotype (101). Plasma adiponectin levels in patients with gastric cancer, especially those with upper gastric cancer, were also reported to be much lower than in control subjects (102). Interestingly, in patients with undifferentiated cancer, serum adiponectin showed a negative correlation with pathological findings such as tumor size, depth of invasion, as well as tumor stage. In a large prospective study comprising 18,225 subjects, hypoadiponectinemia was found to be an independent predictor for the future development of colorectal cancer (103). Together these data suggest that adiponectin deficiency might partly account for the increased risk of the aforementioned cancers in obese and insulin resistant subjects.

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