Abstract 14095: Visceral Adipose Tissue and Cardiometabolic Risk Factors: Differences Between the Jackson Heart Study and the Framingham Heart Study
Background - Despite higher levels of obesity and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, studies suggest that African Americans have lower levels of abdominal visceral adipose tissue (VAT) compared to European Americans. However, the relative association between VAT and cardiometabolic risk factors is uncertain.
Methods - Participants from the Jackson Heart Study (JHS) (n=2035, 65% women) and the Framingham Heart Study (FHS) (n=3170, 64% women) who were free of CVD, and who underwent computerized tomography assessment of abdominal VAT were included. VAT was standardized within each study to a mean of 0 and standard deviation (SD) of 1, and the associations of VAT (per SD) with metabolic risk factors were examined within each study. Finally, we tested an interaction term to quantify whether these associations were similar across studies.
Results - Mean body mass index (BMI) was higher in the JHS (women: 32.7 vs. men: 29.7 kg/m2) than in FHS (women: 27.4 vs. men: 28.6 kg/m2). In women, despite higher rates of hypertension, diabetes and metabolic syndrome in African Americans, VAT (per 1-SD increment) was more strongly associated with hypertension in FHS (OR 1.90) as compared to JHS (OR 1.34, pinteraction=0.001). Similar findings were observed for diabetes, high triglycerides, low HDL and metabolic syndrome (Table). Conversely, in men, we observed stronger associations in JHS compared to FHS for diabetes, high triglycerides, low HDL, and metabolic syndrome.
Conclusion - Despite lower levels of VAT in African as compared to European ancestry individuals, African American men from the JHS have more adverse risk factor profiles per quantity of fat. Opposite associations were observed in women. Unique ethnic and gender differences exist in the associations between VAT and cardiometabolic risk that extend beyond absolute VAT levels.
- © 2011 by American Heart Association, Inc.