Adipose tissue spexin in physical exercise and age-associated diseases

Ageing Res Rev. 2022 Jan;73:101509. doi: 10.1016/j.arr.2021.101509. Epub 2021 Nov 6.


It is known that a strong association exists between a suboptimal lifestyle (physical inactivity and sedentary behavior and/or high calorie diet) and increased propensity of developing age-associated diseases, such as obesity and T2DM. Physical exercise can alleviate obesity-induced insulin resistance and T2DM, however, the precise mechanism for this outcome is not fully understood. The endocrine disorder of adipose tissue in obesity plays a critical role in the development of insulin resistance. In this regard, spexin has been recently described as an adipokine that plays an important role in the pathophysiology of obesity-induced insulin resistance and T2DM. In obese states, expression of adipose tissue spexin is reduced, inducing the adipose tissue and skeletal muscle more susceptible to insulin resistance. Emerging evidences point out that exercise can increase spexin expression. In return, spexin could exert the exercise-protective roles to ameliorate insulin resistance, suggesting that spexin is a potential mediator for exercise to ameliorate obesity-induced insulin resistance and T2DM, namely, the beneficial effect of exercise on insulin sensitivity is at least partly mediated by spexin. This review summarizes our and others' recent studies regarding the effects of obesity on adipose tissue spexin induction, along with the potential effect of exercise on this response in obese context, and provides a new insight into the multivariate relationship among exercise, spexin and T2DM. It should be therefore taken into account that a combination of spexin and exercise training is an effective therapeutic strategy for age-associated diseases.

Keywords: Adipose tissue; Exercise; Insulin sensitivity; Obesity; Spexin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue
  • Exercise
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance*
  • Obesity / therapy
  • Peptide Hormones*


  • Peptide Hormones