Publications : 2011

Cohen SS, Gammon MD, Signorello LB, North KE, Lange EM, Fowke JH, Hargreaves MK, Cai Q, Zheng W, Blot WJ, Matthews CE. 2011. Serum adiponectin in relation to body mass index and other correlates in black and white women. Ann Epidemiol 21(2):86-94.



Adiponectin is a promising biomarker linking obesity and disease risk; however, limited data are available regarding adiponectin in black women among whom obesity is highly prevalent.


A cross-sectional analysis was conducted to assess racial differences and correlates of serum adiponectin measured in 996 black and 996 white women enrolled in the Southern Community Cohort Study through Community Health Centers in twelve southeastern states from 2002–2006.


Blacks had significantly lower adiponectin levels than whites (median 10.9 versus 14.9 ug/ml, Wilcoxon p<0.0001). Among blacks, adiponectin was lower among overweight and obese women compared to healthy weight women but showed no clear decreasing trend with increasing severity of obesity; adjusted geometric means (95% confidence interval) were 15.0 (13.8–16.4), 11.5 (10.6–12.5), 9.7 (9.0–10.6), 11.4 (10.3–12.6), and 10.9 (9.5–12.6) ug/ml for body mass index [BMI] categories of 18.5–24.9, 25–29.9, 30–34.9, 35–39.9, and 40–45 (p for trend<0.0001). In contrast, among whites there was a monotonic reduction in adiponectin over increasing BMI (adjusted geometric means = 19.9 (18.3–21.7), 15.1 (13.9–16.4), 14.3 (13.2–15.5), 12.5 (11.2–13.9), and 11.0 (9.7–12.5) ug/ml, p for trend<0.0001). BMI, age, HDL-cholesterol, and hypertension were important correlates of adiponectin in both groups.


Among women, racial differences exist in both the magnitude and form of the adiponectin-BMI association.