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Childhood obesity is increasing alarmingly, and a strong association with chronic diseases has been established. Specific adipokines are released from the adipose tissue and relate with chronic diseases even in the pediatric population. Adiponectin levels are lower in obesity and increase with decreasing body weight. A few pediatric studies examining a possible relationship between resistin and obesity do not provide a clear picture. Most studies agree that visfatin levels appear elevated in childhood obesity. Exercise seems to increase adiponectin levels whereas resistin levels are reduced. The lack of data on the effects of acute and chronic exercise on visfatin levels precludes us from making safe conclusions as to what the effects of exercise (acute or chronic) would be on visfatin levels in children. Clearly, exercise has an impact on the adipose tissue and the release of adiponectin, resistin, and visfatin. However, other factors affect the secretion rate of these adipokines from the adipose tissue; these factors should also be taken into consideration when examining the effects of exercise on adipokines. Gender, age, body composition, physical activity levels, mode and intensity of exercise are some of the factors that should be looked into in future studies.
Jamurtas, Stavropoulos-Kalinoglou, and Koutedakis are with the Dept. of Physical Education and Sports Science, University of Thessaly, Trikala, Greece. Koutsias is with the Vascular Surgical Department, University Hospital of Larissa, University of Thessaly, Larisa, Greece. Fatouros is with the Dept. of Physical Education and Sport Science, Democritus University of Thrace, Komotini, Greece.