Abstract 4003: Age-Related Differences in Inflammatory Markers: Contribution of Visceral Adiposity
It is well known that abdominal obesity, especially in the presence of an excess of visceral adipose tissue (VAT), is associated with a cluster of metabolic alterations which include an inflammatory profile. Moreover, VAT accumulation as well as inflammatory markers are known to increase with age. We therefore examined whether this age-related change in regional adipose tissue distribution could contribute to explain the increase in the concentration of some inflammatory markers with age. For that purpose, plasma C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin-6 (IL-6) levels were measured in a sample of 195 healthy men aged from 18.6 to 71.2 years (mean age: 41.7±14.9 years) who underwent computed tomography to assess VAT accumulation. Overall, VAT accumulation was positively correlated with age (r=0.53, p<0.0001) as well as with plasma CRP (r=0.36, p<0.0001) and IL-6 (r=0.41, p<0.0001) levels. A significant positive relationship was also observed between age and CRP (r=0.19, p<0.0001) or IL-6 (r=0.27, p<0.0001) concentrations. As middle-aged men were characterized by higher CRP (2.03±1.83 vs. 1.25±1.55 mg/L, p<0.0001) and IL-6 (1.85±1.08 vs. 1.30±0.84 pg/mL, p<0.0001) levels as well as by a greater amount of VAT (p<0.0001) than young men, we have individually matched 39 young men (age: 29.1±6.1 years) with 39 middle-aged men (age: 55.3±7.4 years) on the basis of their similar VAT accumulation. This procedure eliminated the difference between middle-aged men and young men in the inflammation markers studied after such adjustment for VAT. Thus, these results suggest that the age-related variation in CRP and IL-6 is largely explained by differences in VAT.