Ahsan Kazmi, Khalid Mehmood Tariq, Rizwan Hashim


Background: South Asians have a high tendency to develop type 2 diabetes even at low BMI. We
evaluated serum leptin levels in a group of non-obese type 2 diabetics. Methods: An observational study
conducted on 90 subjects, 55 with Type 2 diabetes mellitus, and 35 normal controls (non-diabetics).
BMI, waist circumference, serum leptin, and serum glucose were measured. The correlation between
these variables was studied by multiple regression analysis. Results: Serum leptin levels were positively
correlated with BMI in obese (r=0.976) and non-obese diabetics (r=0.956). Serum leptin was related
with diabetes (r= -0.153, p=0.001). Serum leptin was highly correlated with waist circumference in
obese than non-obese diabetics, (r=0.753). Mean serum leptin level was 21.4 ηg/ml in non-obese
diabetics and 34.9 ηg/ml in diabetic group. It is even lower than the non-obese, non-diabetics (23.3
ηg/ml). Multivariate linear regression analysis between leptin and age, weight, BMI, waist circumference
in patients shows only a strong association with BMI in diabetics (p=0.0001), while in non-diabetic it
was not significant (p=0.07). Serum leptin was high in diabetics taking oral hypoglycaemic (37.8±19.1
ηg/ml), while it was low in diabetics taking insulin injections (29.3±24.2 ηg/ml). Conclusion: Low
leptin levels are associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus independent of changes in BMI.
Keywords: Leptin, BMI, waist circumference, type-2 diabetes mellitus, serum glucose.

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