A Link Between Obesity and Persistent Organic Pollutants?

Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are compounds that do not decompose naturally.  Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are a well-known example.  The advantage of POPs is that they can be used to store or transport other materials without fear of breaking down.  The disadvantage is that they accumulate – in the environment, in the food chain, and in human and animal tissue.

Researchers are increasingly concerned that POPs can cause disruptions in humans, including learning disabilities, birth defects and cancer.  But so far, little is known about their potential role in obesity.  Yonsei University in Seoul, Korea, recently used Agilent equipment to study the relationship between POPs and obesity among Koreans.

The study focused on adiponectin, a protein that helps humans regulate their insulin, glucose levels and fatty acid breakdown.  It is known that adiponectin expression is reduced in conjunction with obesity and type-2 diabetes.  The researchers found a negative association between PCBs and adiponectin in their study of 98 Koreans (49 men and 49 women).  These results could provide support for the hypothesis that POPs exposure may contribute to type-2 diabetes as well as obesity.

The researchers used an Agilent 7890 gas chromatograph with a micro-ECD (micro-electron capture detector) for their study.

This information is for research purposes only.  It is not intended for any use in diagnostic procedures.


For more information go to:

Association Between Serum Levels of Adiponectin and Polychlorinated Biphenyls in Korean Men and Women

Agilent 7890 Gas Chromatograph

Agilent Micro-ECD