Adiponectin inhibits Wnt co-receptor, Lrp6, phosphorylation and β-catenin signaling

Lauren Reinke, Anna P. Lam, Annette S. Flozak, John Varga*, Cara J. Gottardi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Adiponectin is a pleiotropic adipokine implicated in obesity, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. Recent studies have identified adiponectin as a negative regulator of tissue fibrosis. Wnt/β-catenin signaling has also been implicated in metabolic syndrome and can promote tissue fibrosis, but the extent to which adiponectin cross-regulates Wnt/β-catenin signaling is unknown. Using primary human dermal fibroblasts and recombinant purified proteins, we show that adiponectin can limit β-catenin accumulation and downstream gene activation by inhibiting Lrp6 phosphorylation, a key activation step in canonical Wnt signaling. Inhibition of Wnt3a-mediated Lrp6 phospho-activation is relatively rapid (e.g., by 30 min), and is not dependent on established adiponectin G-protein coupled receptors, AdipoR1 and R2, suggesting a more direct relationship to Lrp6 signaling. In contrast, the ability of adiponectin to limit Wnt-induced and baseline collagen production in fibroblasts requires AdipoR1/R2. These results suggest the possibility that the pleiotropic effects of adiponectin may be mediated through distinct cell surface receptor complexes. Accordingly, we propose that the anti-fibrotic activity of adiponectin may be mediated through AdipoR1/R2 receptors, while the ability of adiponectin to inhibit Lrp6 phospho-activation may be relevant to other recently established roles for Lrp6 signaling in glucose metabolism and metabolic syndrome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)606-612
Number of pages7
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 12 2016


  • Adiponectin
  • Beta catenin signaling
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Fibrosis
  • Lrp5/6 receptors
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Metabolism
  • Obesity
  • Wnt

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biophysics
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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