, Volume 19, Issue 10, pp 1414-1423
Date: 27 Jan 2009

Ghrelin and Apolipoprotein AIV Levels Show Opposite Trends to Leptin Levels During Weight Loss in Morbidly Obese Patients

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Although bariatric surgery is the most common procedure used to induce weight loss in morbidly obese patients, its effect on plasma satiety factors (leptin, ghrelin, and apolipoprotein (apo)-AIV) is controversial. The aim of this work was to analyze these parameters before and at different times after surgery.


Plasma was obtained from 34 patients before undergoing Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and during weight loss in the 12 months following surgery.


Morbidly obese patients had significantly higher values (147%) of leptin than normal-weight (NW) persons, while their ghrelin levels were 46% less than NW. Apo-AIV levels had approximately the same value in both groups (obese and NW). During weight loss, leptin decreased by 75% and ghrelin increased by 78%. Both parameters reached values less than or near NW, respectively, at 1 year after surgery. During the first month after surgery, apo-AIV plasma levels decreased (47%) but later increased and finally returned to preoperative values. Apo-AIV levels were correlated negatively with leptin and positively with ghrelin. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels were positively correlated with those of ghrelin and apo-AIV.


During weight loss, plasma leptin and ghrelin could be good markers of total fat decrease. Ghrelin could also indicate gastric mucous improvement, whereas apo-AIV could indicate the recovery of intestinal function. Changes produced in the HDL levels of morbidly obese patients during weight loss suggest a decreased risk of coronary disease.