Author(s): Ippoliti F, Canitano N, Businaro R
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Abstract Obesity is now growing at an alarming rate reaching epidemic proportions worldwide thus increasing morbidity and mortality rates for chronic disease. But although we have ample information on the complications associated with obesity, precisely what causes obesity remains poorly understood. Some evidence attributes a major role to a low-grade chronic inflammatory state (neurogenic inflammation) induced in obesity by inflammatory mediators produced and secreted within the expanded activated adipocyte pool. Adipose tissue is an endocrine organ that secretes numerous adipose tissue-specific or enriched hormones, known as adipokines, cytokine-like molecules thought to play a pathogenic role in cardiovascular diseases. The imbalance between increased inflammatory stimuli and decreased anti-inflammatory mechanisms may depend on chronic stress. Hence the positive correlation found between stress, obesity and cardiovascular diseases. The chronic inflammatory state associated with insulin resistance and endothelial dysfunction is highly deleterious for vascular function. This review focuses on the proposed neuroimmunodulatory mechanisms linking chronic (psychological) stress, obesity and cardiovascular diseases.
This article was published in J Neuroimmune Pharmacol
and referenced in Journal of Obesity & Weight Loss Therapy