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Discov Med. 2013 Feb;15(81):73-83.

Adipokines: novel players in rheumatic diseases.

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Laboratory of NeuroEndocrine Interaction in Rheumatology and Inflammatory Diseases, SERGAS, Santiago University Clinical Hospital Institute of Medical Research, Santiago de Compostela, Spain.


A large body of evidence from clinical and experimental studies is aiding to understand the close relationships between obesity and rheumatic diseases. For instance, it is generally accepted that obesity contributes to the development of osteoarthritis by increasing mechanical load of the joints, at least in weight bearing joints. However, besides mechanical effects, recent studies demonstrated that white adipose tissue is able to secrete a plethora of soluble factors, called adipokines, which have a critical role in the development and progression of some rheumatic diseases such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. In this article, we summarize the recent findings on the interaction of certain adipokines with the two most common rheumatic diseases: osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

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