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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Nov;97(11):E2114-8. doi: 10.1210/jc.2012-1894. Epub 2012 Aug 28.

Pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) varies with body composition and insulin resistance in healthy young people.

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  • 1Metabolic Research Program, 1200 Children's Avenue, Suite 4500, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73104, USA.



Pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) was recently implicated as a metabolic regulatory protein because plasma concentration was increased in obese or insulin resistant adults. To our knowledge, circulating PEDF values in children have not been reported. Because PEDF is a predictor of metabolic health in adults, it may have a similar impact on metabolic profiles in children.


The objective of the study was to determine whether PEDF in normal-weight (NW) and overweight/obese (OW) children and young adults varies with age, sex, or body composition or is associated with clinical markers of metabolic disease.


Volunteers were tested at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.


Ninety-one NW (8-30 yr old) and 105 OW (8-35 yr old) males and females participated in the study.


Body composition, blood pressure, arterial compliance, fasting plasma PEDF, glucose, insulin, (used for homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance), triglycerides, cholesterol (total, low density lipoprotein, and high density lipoprotein), and C-reactive protein.


PEDF was 60% higher in the OW vs. NW participants but did not differ between males and females. PEDF was positively correlated with body mass, body mass index, fat and lean mass, fasting insulin, and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance in both the NW and OW groups. Multiple regression models revealed that fat and lean mass were significant predictors of circulating PEDF levels independent of age, sex, and body mass index category.


Plasma PEDF is elevated in OW youth and is positively associated with insulin resistance. These findings suggest that PEDF may play a role in the development of cardiometabolic dysfunction in youth.

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