Adipose tissue plays a central role in the pathogenesis of metabolic syndrome. Adiponectin (APN) is a bioactive adipocytokine secreted from adipocytes. Low plasma APN levels (hypoadiponectinemia) are observed among obese individuals and in those with related disorders such as diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia. APN ameliorates such disorders. Hypoadiponectinemia is also associated with major cardiovascular diseases including atherosclerosis and cardiac hypertrophy. Accumulating evidence indicates that APN directly interacts with cardiovascular tissue and prevents cardiovascular pathology. Increasing plasma APN or enhancing APN signal transduction may be an ideal strategy to prevent and treat the cardiovascular diseases associated with metabolic syndrome. However, further studies are required to uncover the precise biological actions of APN.