The Protective Role of Adiponectin against Cerebral Ischemic Injury—Evidence from in vivo and in vitro Studies

Adiponectin (APN) is an adipokine abundant in circulation. Its main physiological function is involved

in insulin sensitivity and regulation of metabolism of glucose and lipids. Besides, it has pleiotropic

effects including anti-inflammation, anti-atherosclerosis, anti-thrombosis, promotion of endothelial

repair, and angiogenesis which are protective in endothelial injury, atherosclerosis, and

cardiovascular diseases. Evidence from current in vivo and in vitro studies indicate adiponectin has a

pivotal role against cerebral ischemic injury. Adiponectin is found in vascular endothelium after

cerebral ischemic injury due to exogenous accumulation from the circulation but not endogenous

production in ischemic brain tissues. Adiponectin alleviates cerebral ischemic injury through
multimechanisms, including eNOS-dependent mechanism, anti-inflammation, anti-oxidation, antiapoptosis,

and promotion of angiogenesis. Furthermore, APN-gene modified cell therapy can alleviate

cerebral ischemic injury. Among adiponectin isoforms, the globular adiponectin is mostly studied and

proved to be beneficial in the treatment of cerebral ischemic injury. Since adiponectin is secreted

naturally by human adipocytes with a relatively large amount in the peripheral circulation and has

multi-mechanisms against cerebral ischemic injury, it is of great potential in the application of clinical

treatment of ischemic stroke in the future.

Author (s) Details

Ming-Hsiu, Wu

Division of Neurology, Department of Internal Medicine, Chi Mei Medical Center, Liouying, Tainan, Taiwan,
R.O.C. and Department of Long-Term Care and Health Promotion, Min-Hwei Junior College of Health Care Management, Tainan, Taiwan, R.O.C.

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