Association between obesity-related biomarkers and cognitive and motor development in infants

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Abstract

Background

This study aimed to verify the association between obesity-related biomarkers and cognitive and motor development in infants between 6 and 24 months of age.

Methods

A cross-sectional study was conducted with 50 infants and plasma levels of leptin, adiponectin, resistin, soluble tumor necrosis factor receptors 1 and 2 (sTNFR1 and sTNFR2), chemokines, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), serum cortisol and redox status were measured. The Bayley-III test was utilized to evaluate cognitive and motor development, and multiple linear stepwise regression models were performed to verify the association between selected biomarkers and cognitive and motor development.

Results

A significant association was found among plasma leptin and sTNFR1 levels with cognitive composite scores, and these two independents variables together explained 37% of the variability of cognitive composite scores (p = 0.001). Only plasma sTNFR1 levels were associated and explained 24% of the variability of motor composite scores (p = 0.003).

Conclusions

Plasma levels of sTNFR1 were associated with the increase in cognitive and motor development scores in infants between 6 and 24 months of age through a mechanism not directly related to excess body weight. Moreover, increase in plasma levels of leptin reduced the cognitive development in this age range.

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