Dietary modulation of circulating leptin levels: site-specific changes in fat deposition and ob mRNA expression

Horm Metab Res. 2002 Apr;34(4):176-81. doi: 10.1055/s-2002-26707.


In order to study the effects of diet on fat distribution, circulating leptin levels and ob mRNA expression, diets of different macronutrient composition were fed to lean mice and gold thioglucose-obese mice. A high-fat diet and 2 high-carbohydrate diets, one containing mostly high-glycaemic-index starch and the other containing low-glycaemic-index starch were fed ad libitum for 10 weeks and were compared to standard laboratory chow. Weight gain was attenuated by feeding low-glycaemic-index starch in all mice and by feeding a high-fat diet in lean mice. Reduced adiposity was seen in lean mice fed low-glycaemic-index starch, whereas increased adiposity was seen in both lean and obese mice fed on the high-fat diet. Circulating leptin levels, when corrected for adiposity, were decreased in all mice fed either the high-fat diet or the low-GI diet. In epididymal fat pads, decreased ob mRNA expression was seen after both high-fat and high-glycaemic-index starch feeding. These results show that diet macronutrient composition contributes to the variability of circulating leptin levels by the combined effects of diet on fat distribution and on site-specific changes in ob mRNA expression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Body Composition
  • Body Weight
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / administration & dosage*
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage*
  • Glycemic Index
  • Insulin / metabolism
  • Leptin / blood
  • Leptin / genetics
  • Leptin / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred CBA
  • Mice, Obese
  • Obesity / blood
  • Obesity / metabolism*
  • RNA, Messenger / biosynthesis
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction


  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Fats
  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • RNA, Messenger