There is increasing evidence that the adipose tissue and immunologic processes are closely linked. The most abundant protein within the adipocyte is adiponectin. Our current work reports that adiponectin has potent immuno-suppressive properties, as it induces the production of the anti-inflammatory mediators IL-10 and IL-1RA in primary human monocytes, monocyte-derived macrophages, and dendritic cells. In addition, adiponectin significantly impaired the production of the pro-inflammatory cytokine IFN-gamma in human macrophages. Moreover, adiponectin-treated macrophages exhibit a reduced phagocytotic and allo-stimulatory capacity. However, we could not detect any functional deficits or phenotypic changes in adiponectin-treated monocytes and monocyte-derived DC. In summary, the presented data support the idea that adiponectin might be of critical relevance for cytokine regulation in obesity and fatty liver diseases affecting primarily macrophage functions. This might represent a fundamental link between over-nutrition and an impaired inflammatory immune response.
Copyright 2004 Elsevier Inc.