Circulating levels of adipokines and IGF-1 are associated with skeletal muscle strength of young and old healthy subjects

Laura Bucci, Stella Lukas Yani, Cristina Fabbri, Astrid Y Bijlsma, Andrea B Maier, Carel G Meskers, Marco V Narici, David A Jones, Jamie S McPhee, Enn Seppet, Helena Gapeyeva, Mati Pääsuke, Sarianna Sipilä, Vuokko Kovanen, Lauri Stenroth, Antonio Musarò, Jean-Yves Hogrel, Yoann Barnouin, Gillian Butler-Browne, Miriam CapriClaudio Franceschi, Stefano Salvioli

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


It is known that adipose tissue mass increases with age, and that a number of hormones, collectively called adipokines, are produced by adipose tissue. For most of them it is not known whether their plasmatic levels change with age. Moreover, it is known that adipose tissue infiltration in skeletal muscle is related to sarcopenia and loss of muscle strength. In this study we investigated the age-related changes of representative adipokines and insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-1 and their effect on muscle strength. We studied the association between circulating levels of adiponectin, leptin, resistin and IGF-1 and muscle strength. This cross-sectional study included 412 subjects of different age (152 subjects aged 18-30 years and 260 subjects aged 69-81 years) recruited within the framework of the European research network project "Myoage". The levels of adiponectin (both in male and female subjects) and leptin (only in males) were significantly higher in old subjects compared to young, while those of IGF-1 were lower in old subjects. In old subjects adiponectin, resistin and the resistin/IGF-1 ratio (but not IGF-1 alone) were inversely associated with quadriceps torque, while only adiponectin was inversely associated with handgrip strength independently from percentage of fat mass, height, age, gender and geographical origin. The ratio of leptin to adiponectin was directly associated with handgrip strength in both young and old subjects. These results suggest that in humans the age-associated loss of strength is associated with the levels of representative adipokines and IGF-1.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-72
Number of pages12
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2013


  • Adipokines/blood
  • Adiponectin/blood
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging/physiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Hand Strength/physiology
  • Humans
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I/metabolism
  • Leptin/blood
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength/physiology
  • Muscle, Skeletal/physiology
  • Resistin/blood
  • Signal Transduction/physiology
  • Young Adult


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