Obesity- The gateway to metabolic syndrome

By Rumi Ghosh, Priya Ganpathy, Vilasrao Kadam



Obesity can be referred to as the central player in the development and progression of metabolic syndrome. Although metabolic syndrome lacks a concise definition, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia and hypertension appear to occupy the front row with obesity at the driver’s seat. With over one billion people across the world either overweight or obese the prevalence of metabolic syndrome is also multiplying at an alarming rate. Hence unraveling the underlying molecular aspects of obesity is slowly gaining momentum. One such evolving concept is considering the role of adipose tissue which is in a state of hypertrophy in obesity. In a condition of adiposity the adipose tissue no longer remains a passive storage site but acts an active endocrine organ. The physiology of adipose tissue has a key role in the pathogenesis of the metabolic syndrome and related cardiovascular disorders. This review discusses some vital aspects of the involvement of adipose tissue in obesity linked metabolic disturbances. The increased levels of inflammatory cytokines such as interleukin-1 (IL-1), tumor necrosis factor a (TNF- a), PAI-I (plasminogen activator inhibitor-I) and CRP (C-reactive protein) during obesity are believed to be released from the adipose tissue and thus termed as adipokines. Here we have discussed the role of some important adipose derived hormones leptin, adiponectin and resistin. Many more such adipokines or adipose derived hormones are coming into the picture thus exposing their potential roles in the treatment or prevention of obesity associated metabolic syndrome.


Key Words : Obesity, metabolic syndrome, adipokines.

Click here to download the complete article in PDF Format