The role of total and high-molecular-weight complex of adiponectin in vascular function in offspring whose parents both had type 2 diabetes

Diabetologia. 2005 Oct;48(10):2147-54. doi: 10.1007/s00125-005-1901-5. Epub 2005 Aug 10.


Aims/hypothesis: Adiponectin is an adipokine with insulin-sensitising and anti-atherogenic properties. We studied the role played by total adiponectin and by the bioactive high-molecular-weight (HMW) oligomeric complexes of adiponectin in vascular function in offspring whose parents both had type 2 diabetes, a population at high risk of diabetes and atherosclerosis.

Methods: Total and %HMW adiponectin, the cytokines C-reactive protein, interleukin-6 and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), as well as lipid profiles were assayed in 19 offspring, each with two type 2 diabetic parents. Subjects underwent OGTTs and IVGTTs. Endothelium-dependent vasodilation (EDV) was assessed by brachial artery ultrasonography.

Results: There was a significant relationship between %HMW and total adiponectin levels (r=0.72, p=0.001). Despite an expected strong positive correlation between HDL-cholesterol and adiponectin levels (r=0.52, p=0.04), as well as HDL-cholesterol and EDV (r=0.56, p<0.02), there was no significant relationship between either total adiponectin or % HMW adiponectin and EDV. Adiponectin was inversely associated with PAI-1 (r=0.50, p=0.05), but did not correlate with the inflammatory markers C-reactive protein or interleukin-6.

Conclusions/interpretation: In offspring of diabetic parents, a population at high risk of diabetes and atherosclerotic disease, there is no relationship between total or %HMW adiponectin and endothelium-dependent vasodilation. However, low adiponectin was associated with impaired fibrinolysis as manifested by increased levels of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / physiology*
  • Adult
  • Atherosclerosis / physiopathology
  • Blood Vessels / physiology*
  • Brachial Artery / diagnostic imaging
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / genetics*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology*
  • Endothelium, Vascular / physiology
  • Female
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Molecular Weight
  • Ultrasonography
  • Vasodilation / physiology


  • Adiponectin
  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cytokines