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Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2000 Oct;11(8):327-32.

Adipose tissue as an endocrine organ.

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Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, 764 CRB, 415 Curie Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


The discovery of leptin in the mid-1990s has focused attention on the role of proteins secreted by adipose tissue. Leptin has profound effects on appetite and energy balance, and is also involved in the regulation of neuroendocrine and immune function. Sex steroid and glucocorticoid metabolism in adipose tissue has been implicated as a determinant of body fat distribution and cardiovascular risk. Other adipose products, for example, proinflammatory cytokines, complement factors and components of the coagulation/fibrinolytic cascade, may mediate the metabolic and cardiovascular complications associated with obesity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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