The role of leptin levels in adaptation to cold climates
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH). 2020, 17 (6), . 10.3390/ijerph17061854
Currently, adipose tissue is considered an endocrine organ that produces hormone-active substances, including leptin, which can play a key role in thermoregulation processes. Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis to investigate the influence of the climatic environment on leptin levels. A systematic literature search in the databases was carried out on 10 January 2020. Finally, 22 eligible articles were included in the current meta-analysis and a total of 13,320 participants were covered in the final analysis. It was shown that males of the “North” subgroup demonstrated significantly higher levels of leptin (10.02 ng/mL; CI: 7.92–12.13) than males of the “South” subgroup (4.9 ng/mL; CI: 3.71–6.25) (p = 0.0001). On the contrary, in the female group, a similar pattern was not detected (p = 0.91). Apparently, in order to maintain body temperature, higher leptin levels are required. The results of the study indicate that such effects are most pronounced in males and to a smaller extent in females, apparently due to a relatively high initial concentration of leptin in females. The correlation between leptin levels and climatic environment data support the hypothesis of leptin-mediated thermoregulation as an adaptive mechanism to cold climates.