Obesity and dementia: Adipokines interact with the brain

Ilse A.C. Arnoldussen, Amanda J. Kiliaan, Deborah R. Gustafson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

117 Citations (Scopus)


Obesity is a pandemic and a serious global health concern. Obesity is a risk factor for multiple conditions and contributes to multi-morbidities, resulting in increased health costs and millions of deaths each year. Obesity has been associated with changes in brain structure, cognitive deficits, dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Adipokines, defined as hormones, cytokines and peptides secreted by adipose tissue, may have more widespread influence and functionality in the brain than previously thought. In this review, six adipokines, and their actions in the obese and non-obese conditions will be discussed. Included are: plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factors alpha (TNF-α), angiotensinogen (AGT), adiponectin and leptin. Their functionality in the periphery, their ability to cross the blood brain barrier (BBB) and their influence on dementia processes within the brain will be discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1982-1999
Number of pages18
JournalEuropean Neuropsychopharmacology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Adipokines
  • Alzheimer
  • Brain
  • Dementia
  • Leptin
  • Obesity

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