Prognostic relevance of serum levels and cellular expression of adiponectin in B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukemia

Stefano Molica, Gaetano Vitelli, Giovanna Cutrona, Katia Todoerti, Rosanna Mirabelli, Giovanna Digiesi, Diana Giannarelli, Isabella Sperduti, Matteo Molica, Massimo Gentile, Fortunato Morabito, Antonino Neri, Manlio Ferrarini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The correlation between well-established biological parameters of prognostic relevance in B-cell chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) [i.e., mutational status of the immunoglobulin heavy chain variable region (IgV H), ZAP-70- and CD38-expression] and adiponectin serum concentration was evaluated in a cohort of 69 previously untreated Binet stage A CLL patients. Adiponectin levels inversely correlated with absolute peripheral blood lymphocyte count (r = -0.254; P = 0.03), CD38-positive CLL cells (r = -0.294; P = 0.04) and ZAP-70 (r = -0.285; P = 0.03). The univariate Cox proportional hazard model demonstrated that, in addition with lower serum levels of adiponectin (P = 0.01), the unmutated IgVH condition (P = 0.002) and ZAP-70-positivity (P = 0.02) were associated with a shorter time to first treatment (TFT). However, in multivariate analysis only ZAP-70 positivity emerged as predictor of the TFT (P = 0.008). The levels of adiponectin in CLL were evaluated in 60 patients from an independent cohort investigated by gene expression profiling. Adiponectin gene expression was invariably low suggesting a limited (if any) role of leukemic cells in the production of circulating adiponectin levels. In contrast, both adiponectin receptor 1 (AdipoR1) and AdipoR2 mRNA were highly expressed by CLL cells with a degree of inter-patient variability. Our results, although preliminary, lend support to the idea that adiponectin secretion by bone marrow adipocytes might represent a possible promising drug target in the field of hematology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)374-380
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Hematology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008


  • Adiponectin
  • CD38
  • Early CLL
  • IgVH mutations
  • Prognosis
  • ZAP-70

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology

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