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Adiponectin is independently associated with NT-proBNP: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis


Background and aims

To investigate the associations between selected adipokines and the N-terminal prohormone of B-type natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP).

Methods and results

As many as 1489 individuals enrolled in the Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis were evaluated at 4 clinic visits about every 2 years. The evaluation included fasting venous blood, which was analyzed for NT-proBNP (at visits 1 and 3) and the adipokines adiponectin and leptin (at visits 2 and 3). The mean age was 64.8 ± 9.6 years and 48% were female. After multivariable adjustment, a 1-SD increment in adiponectin was associated with a 14 pg/ml higher NT-proBNP level (p < 0.01), while, compared to the 1st quartile of adiponectin, the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quartiles had 28, 45 and 67% higher NT-proBNP levels (p < 0.01 for all). For changes in NT-proBNP over the follow-up period, and after multivariable adjustment including baseline NT-proBNP, a 1-SD increment in adiponectin was associated with a 25 pg/ml absolute increase in NT-proBNP (p < 0.01), while those in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quartiles of adiponectin were associated with increases of 5, 28 and 65 pg/ml (p = 0.74, 0.09 and <0.01, respectively). There was a significant interaction between adiponectin and sex for visit 3 NT-proBNP (p-interaction < 0.01), with significantly stronger associations in men. Leptin was not associated with NT-proBNP.


Higher adiponectin, but not leptin, is significantly associated with higher levels of NT-proBNP, as well as with greater longitudinal increases in NT-proBNP. The associations were stronger in men.

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