Background: Population-based data on serum adiponectin levels, an adipocytokine secreted from adipose tissue, are lacking, particularly across race-ethnic groups. Studies have suggested an inverse association between adiponectin and vascular risk factors, but data are limited and inconsistent. We examined the cross-sectional association between adiponectin, vascular risk factors and race-ethnicity in the population-based Northern Manhattan Study (NOMAS).
Methods: Blood samples, anthropomorphics, and vascular risk factors were collected at baseline. Multivariable linear regression analysis was conducted with log-transformed adiponectin as the dependent variable.
Results: Adiponectin was measured among 2900 participants (age 69±10 years, body mass index (BMI) 28.0±5.6, 37% male, 21% white, 53% Hispanic, 24% black). The mean adiponectin was 11.4±6.2 μg/mL (median=9.8, range=2.1-53.3). After multivariable adjustment, adiponectin levels were greatest among whites, followed by Hispanics, and lowest among blacks. Lower adiponectin levels were observed in participants with the following characteristics: Male, former smoking, hypertension, diabetes, homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), metabolic syndrome, moderate alcohol use, elevated waist circumference, BMI, estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), lower high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), and younger age. Obesity was a stronger risk factor for decreased adiponectin among blacks than among whites or Hispanics. The associations for several vascular risk factors, including hypertension, triglycerides, and low HDL-C, with low adiponectin were stronger among individuals who were not obese than among those who were obese.
Conclusions: Adiponectin levels were lower among blacks and Hispanics and among those with various vascular risk factors, and greater with older age. The association between BMI and adiponectin varied across race-ethnic groups. Investigation of whether differences in body fat distribution may explain race-ethnic differences in adiponectin is needed.