Abstract 4066: Visceral and Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Volumes are Related to Markers of Inflammation and Oxidative Stress: the Framingham Heart Study
Background Abdominal adiposity is associated with systemic markers of inflammation. We investigated whether subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and visceral adipose tissue (VAT) determined by computed tomography contribute differentially to inflammation in a community-based cohort.
Methods Participants from the Framingham Offspring Study (n=1250, 52% women, mean age 60±9 years) underwent computed tomography quantification of SAT and VAT. Using multivariable linear regression, SAT and VAT (predictor variables) were examined in relation to log-transformed markers of inflammation (CRP, CD40L, fibrinogen, ICAM-1, IL-6, MCP-1, osteoprotegerin, p-selectin, TNF-α, TNFR2) and oxidative stress (MPO, urinary isoprostanes). Models were adjusted for age, sex, smoking, physical activity, menopause, hormone replacement therapy, alcohol, and aspirin use; additional models included body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC).
Results Mean (±SD) SAT and VAT were 3023±1329 and 2126±1112 cm3, respectively. There were no significant differences in the strong positive associations of SAT or VAT (model R2 ranges 0.06–0.24 and 0.07–0.24 respectively) with CRP, fibrinogen, ICAM-1, IL-6, p-selectin and TNFR2. We observed modest differences in the associations between the two fat compartments and MCP-1 and isoprostanes. Compared with SAT (R2 0.07), VAT (R2 0.08) was more highly correlated with MCP-1 (SAT vs VAT comparison p=0.04). Similarly for isoprostanes, compared with SAT (R2 0.07), VAT (R2 0.10) was more highly correlated (comparison p=0.002). Only SAT was associated with MPO (R2 0.05). Neither compartment was associated with TNF-α, osteoprotegerin, and CD40L. Adding BMI and WC to the models, only VAT remained significantly associated with CRP (p=0.007), IL-6 (p=0.01), MCP-1 (p=0.008), and isoprostanes (p=0.0002).
Conclusions Contrary to multiple small studies suggesting differential effects of abdominal fat compartments, SAT and VAT are similarly correlated with many markers of systemic inflammation. Adjusting for clinical measures of adiposity, only VAT remains associated with several markers. Our cross-sectional data are consistent with a potential unique role of VAT in the pathogenesis of inflammation and oxidative stress.