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Approved Research

Trans-ethnic meta-analysis of genome-wide association studies of adiponectin and the effect of adiponectin on cardiometabolic traits

Principal Investigator: Dr Cassandra Spracklen
Approved Research ID: 81009
Approval date: July 21st 2022

Lay summary

Adiponectin is a biomarker that is secreted almost exclusively from adipose, or fat, tissue and has been shown to influence a person's risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and metabolic syndrome. Previous studies used an analysis called "Mendelian randomization" to look for a causal link between adiponectin and coronary heart disease and type 2 diabetes, but the analyses were based on our limited understanding of the DNA variants associated with adiponectin levels. Our goal is to improve upon the previous "Mendelian randomization" studies by using the most up-to-date knowledge on adiponectin-associated DNA variants to see if adiponectin, itself, causes different diseases or if it is coincidental. We will also create a numerical score ("genetic risk scores") that we can use to try and predict person's risk for cardiovascular-related diseases (such as type 2 diabetes, obesity, and heart attack). We will also look at other trait data within the UK Biobank to determine if the DNA variants that influence  adiponectin levels are also associated with other traits or disease-- this may help us hypothesize and/or determine the mechanism(s) for how the DNA variants are working to affect adiponectin levels and other related traits. Results from this study may help predict a person's risk for cardiometabolic disease and may help researchers identify new drug targets for the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular diseases.