Modulation of adipokines and cytokines in gestational diabetes and macrosomia

J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2006 Oct;91(10):4137-43. doi: 10.1210/jc.2006-0980. Epub 2006 Jul 18.


Context/objective: Not much is known about the implication of adipokines and different cytokines in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and macrosomia. The purpose of this study was to assess the profile of these hormones and cytokines in macrosomic babies, born to gestational diabetic women.

Design/subjects: A total of 59 women (age, 19-42 yr) suffering from GDM with their macrosomic babies (4.35 +/- 0.06 kg) and 60 healthy age-matched pregnant women and their newborns (3.22 +/- 0.08 kg) were selected.

Methods: Serum adipokines (adiponectin and leptin) were quantified using an obesity-related multiple ELISA microarray kit. The concentrations of serum cytokines were determined by ELISA.

Results: Serum adiponectin levels were decreased, whereas the concentrations of leptin, inflammatory cytokines, such as IL-6 and TNF-alpha, were significantly increased in gestational diabetic mothers compared with control women. The levels of these adipocytokines were diminished in macrosomic babies in comparison with their age-matched control newborns. Serum concentrations of T helper type 1 (Th1) cytokines (IL-2 and interferon-gamma) were decreased, whereas IL-10 levels were significantly enhanced in gestational diabetic mothers compared with control women. Macrosomic children exhibited high levels of Th1 cytokines and low levels of IL-10 compared with control infants. Serum IL-4 levels were not altered between gestational diabetic mothers and control mothers or the macrosomic babies and newborn control babies.

Conclusions: GDM is linked to the down-regulation of adiponectin along with Th1 cytokines and up-regulation of leptin and inflammatory cytokines. Macrosomia was associated with the up-regulation of Th1 cytokines and the down-regulation of the obesity-related agents (IL-6 and TNF-alpha, leptin, and adiponectin).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / blood
  • Adult
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Cytokines / blood*
  • Diabetes, Gestational / immunology*
  • Female
  • Fetal Macrosomia / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Insulin / blood
  • Interferon-gamma / blood
  • Interleukin-2 / blood
  • Interleukin-4 / blood
  • Interleukin-6 / blood
  • Leptin / blood*
  • Lipids / blood
  • Male
  • Pregnancy
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / analysis


  • ADIPOQ protein, human
  • Adiponectin
  • Blood Glucose
  • Cytokines
  • Insulin
  • Interleukin-2
  • Interleukin-6
  • Leptin
  • Lipids
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Interleukin-4
  • Interferon-gamma