Background Hormonal contraception is the most common medication used by reproductive aged women but there is little understanding of the impact of hormonal contraception on obesity and metabolism. Adipokine levels (adiponectin, resistin) and markers of adipocyte development (DLK-1) are altered in obese animals and humans and are associated with increased cardiovascular risk. We sought to determine the effect of combined hormonal oral contraceptive pills (COCs) on circulating adiponectin, resistin and DLK-1 levels in obese and normal-weight rhesus macaque monkeys. Methods Serum adiponectin, resistin and DLK-1 levels in reproductive-age female rhesus macaques of normal (n = 5, mean = 5.76 kg) and inherently obese (n = 5, mean = 8.11 kg) weight were determined before, during and 2 months after cessation of 8 months of continuous treatment with COCs. Results The obese group alone showed a significant decrease (p<.01) in weight with COC use, which returned to baseline after COC cessation. Baseline adiponectin levels prior to COC treatment were lower in the obese group (p<.05). Adiponectin levels increased from baseline in both groups, but more so in the obese group (p<.05). Resistin levels were similar at baseline, with an increase in both groups following treatment. Circulating resistin remained elevated above baseline levels after COC cessation, particularly in the obese group (p<.05). While DLK-1 levels did not change significantly in either group, a trend for higher levels in obese animals was observed. Conclusions COC use may alter metabolic processes via direct (resistin) or indirect (adiponectin) means, while unchanging DLK1 levels suggest they do not affect adipocyte development. COCs may directly increase resistin levels, as observed in both groups. As adiponectin is inversely related to adipocyte mass, increased levels in the obese group are likely attributed to weight loss.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||6|
|State||Published - Jul 1 2013|
- Hormonal contraception
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Reproductive Medicine
- Obstetrics and Gynecology