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Diabetes. 2008 Apr;57(4):809-16. Epub 2007 Dec 27.

PPARGC1A variation associated with DNA damage, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases: the Boston Puerto Rican Health Study.

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  • 1Nutrition and Genomics Laboratory, JM-USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, 711 Washington St., Boston, MA 02111, USA. chaoqiang.lai@ars.usda.gov

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Individuals with type 2 diabetes exhibit higher DNA damage and increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, mechanisms underlying the association between DNA damage and development of type 2 diabetes and CVD are not understood. We sought to link peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma coactivator-1 alpha (PPARGC1A), a master transcriptional regulator of mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation and cellular energy metabolism, with DNA damage, type 2 diabetes, and CVD.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS:

We measured DNA damage as urinary 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) concentration and examined the relationship between nine PPARGC1A genetic variants, DNA damage, type 2 diabetes, and self-reported CVD in 959 participants of the Boston Puerto Rican Health Study.

RESULTS:

With respect to urinary 8-OHdG, PPARGC1A variants showed significant association, and PPARGC1A haplotypes exhibited significant association after correction for multiple testing. Two independent PPARGC1A variants associated significantly with type 2 diabetes (odds ratios [ORs] 1.35 and 2.46; P = 0.045 and <0.001). Carriers of minor alleles of two other PPARGC1A variants, both in strong linkage disequilibrium and associated with lower DNA damage, showed lower prevalence of CVD (ORs 0.53 and 0.65; P = 0.030 and 0.175). Moreover, we found that physical activity correlated negatively with DNA damage.

CONCLUSIONS:

It is plausible that low physical activity combined with risk haplotyes contribute to the high prevalence of type 2 diabetes in this population. We propose that PPARGC1A influences development of type 2 diabetes and CVD via DNA damage. Increasing physical activity, which induces PPARGC1A expression, is a potential strategy to slow DNA damage, thereby decreasing the risk of CVD for individuals with type 2 diabetes.

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