Adipokines: A gear shift in puberty

Desirée Nieuwenhuis, Natàlia Pujol-Gualdo, Ilse A.C. Arnoldussen, Amanda J. Kiliaan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


In this review, we discuss the role of adipokines in the onset of puberty in children with obesity during adrenarche and gonadarche and provide a clear and detailed overview of the biological processes of two major players, leptin and adiponectin. Adipokines, especially leptin and adiponectin, seem to induce an early onset of puberty in girls and boys with obesity by affecting the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis. Moreover, adipokines and their receptors are expressed in the gonads, suggesting a role in sexual maturation and reproduction. All in all, adipokines may be a clue in understanding mechanisms underlying the onset of puberty in childhood obesity and puberty onset variability.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere13005
JournalObesity Reviews
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • adipokines
  • obesity
  • puberty

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