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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2004 Nov;89(11):5569-76.

Late life metabolic syndrome, early growth, and common polymorphism in the growth hormone and placental lactogen gene cluster.

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Human Genetics Division, Duthie Building Mp808, Tremona Road, School of Medicine, Southampton University Hospital, Southampton, United Kingdom SO16 6YD.


Low rates of fetal and infant growth are associated with the metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease in later life. We investigated common genetic variation in the GH-CSH gene cluster on chromosome 17q23 encoding GH, placental lactogens [chorionic somatomammotropins (CSH)], and placental GH variant in relation to fetal and infant growth and phenotypic features of the metabolic syndrome in subjects aged 59-72 yr from Hertfordshire, UK. Allele groups T, D1, and D2 of a locus herein designated CSH1.01 were examined in relation to GH-CSH single nucleotide polymorphisms and to specific phenotypes. Average birth weights were similar for all genotype groups. Men with T alleles were significantly lighter at 1 yr of age, shorter as adults, and had higher blood pressures, fasting insulin (T/T 66% higher than D2/D2) and triglyceride concentrations, and insulin and glucose concentrations during a glucose tolerance test. Birth weight and 1-yr weight associations with metabolic syndrome traits were independent of the CSH1.01 effects. Common diversity in GH-CSH correlates with low 1-yr weight and with features of the metabolic syndrome in later life. GH-CSH genotype adds substantially to, but does not account for, the associations between low body weight, at birth and in infancy, and the metabolic syndrome.

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