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Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2005 Jul;63(1):63-5.

Severe hypoleptinaemia associated with insulin resistance in patients with common variable immunodeficiency.

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Department of Internal Medicine, State University of Campinas, SP, Brazil.



Common variable immunodeficiency (CVI) is a primary immunodeficiency syndrome characterized by impaired production of antibodies and recurrent infections. Delay in diagnosis leads to metabolic wastage and low body weight. Leptin, a hormone produced by white adipose tissue, modulates insulin action by signal transduction cross-talk and by direct action on pancreatic beta-cells. We hypothesized that patients with CVI might present a defective regulation of leptin production and insulin resistance.


Thirteen CVI patients (39 +/- 11 years) under gammaglobulin replacement were evaluated in parallel with 13 gender-, age-, body weight- and body mass index (BMI)-matched healthy voluntaries, and with data from two large population series, the Bruneck and the Hoorn Studies.


Serum leptin and insulin levels, homeostasis model assessment - insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), body composition, haematological, biochemical and immunoglobulin measurements were obtained. Data were analysed by a one-way analysis of variance (anova) and by Pearson's rank analysis. The institutional ethics committee approved the study, and informed consent was obtained from patients and controls.


No differences were found between CVI and the control group when comparing gender distribution, age, body weight, BMI, waist/hip ratio, relative body fat and fasting glucose levels. Leptin levels were lower (P < 0.05) in CVI patients than in controls and lower than fasting leptin levels detected in a large population study. CVI patients' serum leptin levels did not correlate with BMI (r = 0.074, P = 0.8) and their high HOMA-IR indicated insulin resistance.


CVI patients are relatively hypoleptinaemic and insulin resistant, and their serum leptin levels are not correlated to their BMI.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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