Large-for-gestational-age, leptin and adiponectin in infancy
Fetal overgrowth “programs” an elevated risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes in adulthood. Plausibly, adipokines may be involved in programming metabolic health.

This study aimed to evaluate whether large-for-gestational-age (LGA), an indicator of fetal overgrowth, is associated with altered circulating leptin and adiponectin levels in infancy, and assess the determinants.

In the Canadian 3D birth cohort, researchers studied 70 LGA (birth weight more than 90 th percentile) and 140 optimal-for-gestational-age (OGA, 25 th-75 th percentiles) infants matched by maternal ethnicity, smoking and gestational age at delivery. The primary outcomes were fasting leptin, total and high molecular weight (HMW) adiponectin concentrations at age 2 years.

-- LGA infants had higher body mass index (BMI) than OGA infants.

-- However, there were no significant differences in leptin, total and HMW adiponectin concentrations.

-- Leptin concentrations were positively associated with female sex, weight gain 0-24 months, current BMI and the sum of triceps and subscapular skinfold thickness, and negatively associated with maternal age and Caucasian ethnicity.

-- Female sex was associated with lower total and HMW adiponectin concentrations.

-- Weight gain 0-24 months and current BMI were positively correlated with total and HMW adiponectin concentrations in LGA infants only.

Conclusively, this study is the first to demonstrate that LGA does not matter for circulating leptin and adiponectin concentrations in infancy, and there may be LGA-specific positive associations between weigh gain or current BMI and adiponectin concentrations in infancy, suggesting dysfunction in establishing the adiposity-adiponectin negative feedback loop in LGA subjects.