Soluble leptin receptor levels in patients with anorexia nervosa

Endocr Res. 2002 Aug;28(3):199-205. doi: 10.1081/erc-120015058.


Objective: To examine whether changes of serum soluble leptin receptor levels (S-LEPR) can modify leptin half-life and its tissue effects. The aim of our study was to measure S-LEPR levels in patients with anorexia nervosa (AN) before and 6 weeks after partial refeeding.

Methods: Anthropometric variables, serum leptin, S-LEPR, insulin, cortisol and TNF-alpha were measured in 15 AN patients before and after partial refeeding and 15 healthy control women.

Results: S-LEPR levels in AN patients were significantly higher than in healthy subjects (26.8 +/- 8.1 vs. 16.36+/-2.6U/mL, p < 0.01) and were not affected by partial refeeding (26.8 +/- 8.1 vs. 24.2 +/- 6.1 U/mL). In contrast, body mass index (BMI), body fat content, and serum leptin levels in AN patients increased significantly after partial refeeding. Except for the inverse relationship of S-LEPR levels to BMI and body fat content no clear relationship of this parameter to serum leptin, cortisol, insulin or TNF-alpha was found.

Conclusion: S-LEPR levels are significantly increased in AN patients and this increase is unaffected by partial refeeding. The possibility of etiological role of increased S-LEPR levels in AN patients by affecting leptin central and/or peripherial effects should be further elucidated.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / pathology
  • Anorexia Nervosa / blood*
  • Anorexia Nervosa / pathology
  • Body Composition
  • Body Mass Index
  • Female
  • Food
  • Humans
  • Insulin / blood
  • Leptin / blood
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / blood*
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / chemistry
  • Receptors, Leptin
  • Reference Values
  • Solubility


  • Insulin
  • Leptin
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Receptors, Leptin
  • leptin receptor, human