Abdominal fat depots associated with insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome risk factors in black African young adults
BMC Public Health
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Rolfe, E. d. L., Ong, K., Sleigh, A., Dunger, D., & Norris, S. A. (2015). Abdominal fat depots associated with insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome risk factors in black African young adults. BMC Public Health, 15 (1013)https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-015-2147-x
Background: Individuals of black ethnicity tend to have less visceral fat (VAT) but more subcutaneous-abdominal fat (SCAT) than white Caucasians. However, it is unclear whether such distribution of abdominal fat is beneficial for metabolic disease risk in black individuals. Here we examined the associations between these specific abdominal fat compartments and metabolic syndrome risk. Methods: 76 black South African young adults (36 men; 40 women) aged 18-19 years participating in the Birth to Twenty Cohort Study had VAT and SCAT measured by MRI. The metabolic syndrome traits (blood pressure, lipid profile, fasting glucose and insulin) were measured and the values were combined into a metabolic syndrome risk score. Results: Compared to men, women had greater VAT (mean: 16.6 vs. 12.5 cm2; p=0.005) and SCAT (median 164.0 vs. 59.9; p=0.0001). In men, SCAT (r=0.50) was more strongly related to the metabolic syndrome score than was VAT (r=0.23), and was independently associated with MetS (P=0.004) and HOMA-IR (P<0.001) after adjustment for VAT. In women, both abdominal fat compartments showed similar positive correlations with the metabolic syndrome score (r=0.26 to 0.31), although the associations were weaker than in men. In men and women combined, SCAT explained the sex difference in HOMA-IR (adjusted p-value for sex =0.08). Conclusions: In black South Africans, SCAT may be more relevant than VAT to metabolic syndrome traits at the younger ages. Their tendency to accumulate SCAT rather than VAT is unlikely to be beneficial to metabolic syndrome risk.
ultrasound, MRI, deep and superficial subcutaneous adipose tissue, visceral fat, young adults
The study was supported by the Medical Research Councils of South Africa and UK. Shane Norris is supported by the UK MRC/DfID Africa Research Leader Scheme. Alison Sleigh is supported by core staff funding from the NIHR/Wellcome Trust Cambridge Clinical Research Facility. EDLR and KO are supported by the Medical Research Council (UK) [programme number MC_UU_12015/2].
Medical Research Council (MC_U106179472)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-015-2147-x
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/250396
Attribution 2.0 UK: England & Wales
Licence URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/uk/