Adipose tissue: a regulator of inflammation

Best Pract Res Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2005 Dec;19(4):547-66. doi: 10.1016/j.beem.2005.07.009.


Adipose tissue is a highly active organ. In addition to storing calories as triglycerides, it also secretes a large variety of proteins, including cytokines, chemokines and hormone-like factors, such as leptin, adiponectin and resistin. Intriguingly, many, if not most, of these adipose-derived proteins have dual actions; cytokines have both immunomodulatory functions and act as systemic or auto-/paracrine regulators of metabolism, while proteins such as leptin and adiponectin are regulators of both metabolism and inflammation. The production of pro-atherogenic chemokines by adipose tissue is of particular interest since their local secretion, e.g. by perivascular adipose depots, may provide a novel mechanistic link between obesity and the associated vascular complications.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / physiology
  • Adipose Tissue / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Chemokines / physiology
  • Cytokines / physiology
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / physiopathology*
  • Leptin / physiology
  • Lipid Metabolism / physiology
  • Mice
  • Resistin / physiology


  • Adiponectin
  • Chemokines
  • Cytokines
  • Leptin
  • Resistin
  • Glucose