Calcified Tissue International

, Volume 100, Issue 5, pp 486–499 | Cite as

The Activity of Adiponectin in Bone

  • Dorit NaotEmail author
  • David S. Musson
  • Jillian Cornish
Original Research


The adipokine adiponectin affects multiple target tissues and plays important roles in glucose metabolism and whole-body energy homeostasis. Circulating adiponectin levels in obese people are lower than in non-obese, and increased serum adiponectin is associated with weight loss. Numerous clinical studies have established that fat mass is positively related to bone mass, a relationship that is maintained by communication between the two tissues through hormones and cytokines. Since adiponectin levels inversely correspond to fat mass, its bone effects and its potential contribution to the relationship between fat and bone have been investigated. In clinical observational studies, adiponectin was found to be negatively associated with bone mineral density, suggesting it might be a negative regulator of bone metabolism. In order to identify the mechanisms that underlie the activity of adiponectin in bone, a large number of laboratory studies in vitro and in animal models of mice over-expressing or deficient of adiponectin have been carried out. Results of these studies are not entirely congruent, partly due to variation among experimental systems and partly due to the complex nature of adiponectin signaling, which involves a combination of multiple direct and indirect mechanisms.


Adiponectin Adipokine Bone Fat 



The authors thank Mr Greg Gamble for the valuable discussion. The work was supported by the Health Research Council of New Zealand and the Auckland Medical Research Foundation.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

Dorit Naot, David S. Musson, Jillian Cornish declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

For this type of study formal consent is not required.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

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