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International Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology

Open Access

Serum levels of FGF21 are reduced and negatively correlated with adiponectin in children with Prader-Willi syndrome

  • Su Jin Kim1,
  • Young Bae Sohn2,
  • Sung-Yoon Cho3,
  • Young Ok Choi4,
  • Chi Hwa Kim4 and
  • Dong-Kyu Jin3
International Journal of Pediatric Endocrinology20132013(Suppl 1):P52

Published: 3 October 2013


Insulin SensitivityOral Glucose Tolerance TestAdiponectin LevelFasting SerumFGF21 Level


FGF21 (fibroblast growth factor 21) is a novel metabolic regulator that has beneficial effects on glucose homeostasis and insulin sensitivity. In human obesity, serum FGF21 level was increased. The aims of this study were comparing fasting serum levels of FGF21 in Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS) and obese control children and finding correlations these levels with insulin sensitivity and obesity-related parameters.


Sixteen children (median age, 10 years; interquartile range, 9.0–13.5 years) with PWS were matched with 16 control subjects (median age, 10.5 years; interquartile range, 9.5- 12.5 years). We measured serum levels of FGF21, adiponectin, insulin sensitivity and obesity-related parameters during oral glucose tolerance test.


Waist to hip ratio and HOMA-IR were lower in PWS individuals relative to control subjects. Remarkably, serum levels of FGF21 were lower and adiponectin were higher in PWS subjects than in control subjects. FGF21 levels were significantly positively correlated with HOMA-IR and negatively correlated with adiponectin.


Previously, FGF21 level was reported to increase with obesity. However, compared with obese controls, our results show PWS individuals have lower FGF21 levels. Our data suggest that insulin sensitivity, lower waist to hip ratio, lower FGF21 levels and higher adiponectin levels are the characteristics of PWS children.

Authors’ Affiliations

Departmnet of Pediatrics, Kwandong University College of Medicine Myongji Hospital, Goyang, Korea
Department of Medical Genetics, Ajou University Hospital, Suwon, Korea
Department of Pediatrics, Samsung Medical Center, SungKyunKwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea
Clinical Research Center, Samsung Biomedical Research Institute, Seoul, Korea


© Kim et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.