Background: Childhood obesity is a condition where excess body fat negatively affects a childs health or wellbeing. Potential risk factors for cardiovascular diseases (CVD) tend to cluster in childhood and are strongly associated with obesity.
High levels of free fatty acids originating from visceral fat reach the liver through the portal circulation and stimulate synthesis of the triglyceride-rich lipoprotein VLDL the resulting elevation in VLDL can lower HDL cholesterol.Adipose tissue can also synthesize cytokines such as IL-6. Leptin is a hormone produced by the adipocytes to regulate food intake, its circulating levels directly correlate with the amount of body fat and BMI.
Previous researchers had provided evidence suggesting that ob gene expression is up regulated by some inflammatory cytokines such as IL-6.
Aim: The aim of this study is to explore the accumulative effect of serum leptin, interluikin-6, cholesterol and HDL in order to detect the presence of any impairment of these parameters as risk factors for metabolic cardiovascular syndrome in obese prepubertal children, in an attempt to overcome the increased health risk associated with obesity in children.
Subjects and methods: Eighty prepubertal children age range between (5 11) years old were enrolled in this study. Divided according to their weight into two groups:
i) Obese group 50 subjects, Lean group 30 aged matched subjects.
ii) Circulating serum leptin, IL-6, cholesterol and HDL were measured.
Results: Serum leptin IL-6 and cholesterol showed a significantly higher values in obese children than in leans. No significant correlations were found to exist between leptin and IL-6 in both groups. However a significant correlation was found between cholesterol and IL-6 in obese children.
Conclusion: IL-6 was elevated metabolically so inflammation might be a risk factor rather than a consequence of cardiovascular metabolic syndrome in obese children. In the light of these findings interventional measures are necessary in order to prevent excessive weight gain during childhood.