Prospective studies with measurement of a comprehensive panel of adipokines in early pregnancy and gestational diabetes (GDM) risk are sparse, and studies of adipokines for prediction of GDM are limited. We investigated a panel of adipokines in relation to GDM risk. In a nested case-control study within the NICHD Fetal Growth Studies-Singleton cohort (2009-2013), we identified 107 GDM cases and selected 214 controls matched on age, race/ethnicity, and gestational week (GW) at blood draw. Plasma Leptin, Soluble Leptin Receptor (sOB-R), Free Leptin, Chemerin, Fatty Acid Binding Protein 4 (FABP4), Retinol Binding Protein 4, Adiponectin, Omentin1, and Vaspin were measured prior to GDM at GWs 10-14, 15-26. Adjusting for maternal age, GW of blood collection, nulliparity, and family history of diabetes, conditional logistic analysis was performed to estimate adjusted odds ratios (aOR) for associations of adipokines with GDM. Receiver-operating-characteristic (ROC) curves assessed the predictive value of adipokines for GDM diagnosis. Leptin, Free Leptin, Chemerin, and FABP4 concentrations were significantly higher. Adiponectin, and sOB-R were significantly lower among cases than controls. At GW 10-14, Adiponectin, and sOB-R were significantly and inversely related to GDM risk. For example, across increasing quartiles of sOB-R the aOR were 1.00 (ref), 0.37 (0.19, 0.74), 0.28 (0.13, 0.59), and 0.24 (0.11, 0.52) (Ptrend≤.0001). In contrast, Leptin, Free Leptin, Chemerin, and FABP4 were significantly and positively associated with GDM risk. In general, associations of adipokines with GDM were stronger at GW 15-26. In addition, at GW 15-26, sOB-R significantly improved GDM prediction over conventional risk factors (age, GW, race, nulliparity, family history of diabetes, prepregnancy BMI) and glucose (P = 0.02). A panel of adipokines may be implicated in the pathogenesis of GDM with significant associations and incremental predictive value detected in early pregnancy before GDM is usually screened for.


E.C. Francis: None. M. Li: None. S. Hinkle: None. J. Chen: None. L. Chen: None. C. Zhang: None.


National Institutes of Health

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