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Prog Lipid Res. 2004 Jul;43(4):283-301.

Leptin: linking adipocyte metabolism with cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases.

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Flanders Interuniversity Institute for Biotechnology, VIB09, Department of Medical Protein Research, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, A. Baertsoenkaai 3, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium.


Leptin was originally discovered as an adipocyte-derived hormone involved in the central control of body weight and energy homeostasis. It is now clear that leptin is a pleiotropic cytokine, with activities on many peripheral cell types. These findings may help explain the surprising role of leptin in pathophysiological processes. Recent evidence suggests that leptin contributes to atherosclerosis and to the increased risk of cardiovascular disease in obese people. Leptin also appears to be involved in T-cell-dependent immunity and possibly in the development and maintenance of certain autoimmune diseases. Here, we review the role of leptin in cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases, and also briefly address the potential therapeutic use of leptin antagonists.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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