Almost 20 years have passed since the first laboratory evidence emerged that an abundant message encoding a protein with homology to the C1q superfamily is highly specifically expressed in adipocytes. At this stage, we refer to this protein as adiponectin. Despite more than 10,000 reports in the literature since its initial description, we seem to have written only the first chapter in the textbook on adiponectin physiology. With every new aspect we learn about adiponectin, a host of new questions arise with respect to the underlying molecular mechanisms. Here, we aim to summarize recent findings in the field and bring the rodent studies that suggest a causal relationship between adiponectin levels in plasma and systemic insulin sensitivity in perspective with the currently available data on the clinical side.
Keywords: AMPK; AdipoR; Ceramide; Human; Insulin sensitivity; Mouse; Oligomeric complexes.