To date, only leptin and insulin are known to act as adiposity signals[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”] that signify the amount of body fat. In general,
- Leptin circulates at levels directly proportional to body fat.
- It enters the central nervous system in proportion to its plasma concentration.
- Its receptors are found in brain neurons involved in regulating energy intake and expenditure.
- It controls food intake and energy expenditure by acting on receptors in the mediobasal hypothalamus.
J Hypertens. 2014 Feb 5.
Pieterse C, Schutte R, Schutte AE.
Evidence exists that leptin enhances sympathetic activity and may thereby contribute to the development of obesity-related hypertension. Sympathetic activation also seems more prominent in Africans than whites. We compared leptin levels, and different markers of autonomic activity between Africans and whites, and determined whether a relationship exists between leptin and autonomic activity.
The study included 409 African and white school teachers (aged, 44.6 ± 9.6 years). We determined leptin in serum and measured ambulatory blood pressure. Markers reflecting autonomic activity included renin, cortisol, baroreflex sensitivity, ambulatory heart rate and heart rate variability (HRV) components (assessed by 24-h ECG recordings in the frequency and geometric domain).
Africans had higher leptin levels, BMI, blood pressure and heart rate (all P < 0.001) as well as lower HRV triangular index and HRV total power (P < 0.001). After also adjusting for BMI in multivariate regression analyses, in African men, renin (β = 0.228; P = 0.033), night-time heart rate (β = 0.184; P = 0.034), HRV triangular index (β = -0.230; P = 0.010) and HRV total power (β = -0.214; P = 0.046) associated with leptin. In white men, leptin associated with 24-h heart rate (β = 0.376; P < 0.001), as well as day and night-time heart rate (both P < 0.01), HRV triangular index (β = -0.335; P < 0.001) and HRV total power (β = -0.403; P < 0.001). In African women, we observed an association of leptin with the total power component of HRV (β = -0.214; P = 0.046) and a borderline association with renin (β = 0.219; P = 0.057). No significant associations were apparent in the white women.
We found that leptin is independently associated with different markers of autonomic activity, especially in men.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]