Leptin, the protein product of the ob gene, regulates appetite and body weight in animals. Endotexin and cytokines, induced by endotoxin, interleukin (IL) 1 and tumor necrosis factor, increase expression of leptin in mice and hamsters. We measured serum leptin concentrations in patients with cancer before and after administration of recombinant human IL-1α. Fourteen patients received IL-1α at one of three dose levels (0.03, 0.1, or 0.3 μg/kg · day) for 5 days. Serum leptin concentrations increased in all but two patients within 24 h after the first dose. The increase in leptin was correlated directly with IL-1α dose (P = 0.0030). Despite continued administration of IL-1α, serum leptin concentrations returned to pretreatment levels by day 5 of therapy. An increase in serum leptin concentrations may be one mechanism by which anorexia is induced by IL-1α. However, tachyphylaxis of the leptin response suggests that other mechanisms also are involved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Clinical Biochemistry
- Biochemistry, medical