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Int J Endocrinol. 2013;2013:182753. doi: 10.1155/2013/182753. Epub 2013 Nov 20.

Trunk fat negatively influences skeletal and testicular functions in obese men: clinical implications for the aging male.

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Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, Unit of Endocrinology, University of Rome "Foro Italico", Largo Lauro De Bosis 15, 00195 Rome, Italy.
Department of Experimental Medicine, Medical Pathophysiology, Food and Science and Endocrinology Section, "Sapienza" University of Rome, Viale Regina Elena 324, 00161 Rome, Italy.


Osteocalcin (OSCA) seems to act as a negative regulator of energy metabolism and insulin sensitivity. Evidence from male rodents suggests that OSCA may also regulate testosterone (T) synthesis. Using a cross-sectional design, we evaluated OSCA, 25(OH) vitamin D, T, 17 β -estradiol (E2), homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), and body composition in 86 obese (mean BMI = 34) male subjects (18-69 yr old). Independently from BMI, an inverse relationship between trunk fat percentage and plasma T (r (2) = -0.26, P < 0.01) and between HOMA-IR and OSCA levels (r (2) = -0.22, P < 0.005) was found. OSCA levels, as well as vitamin D, decreased significantly for higher BMI with significant differences above 35 (P < 0.01). A direct correlation between T and bone mineral density at lumbar (BMDL) and neck (BMDH) (P < 0.001, r (2) = -0.20; P < 0.001, r (2) = -0.24) was found, independently from age. An inverse correlation between E2 levels, BMDL, and BMDH (P < 0.001, r (2) = -0.20; P < 0.001, r (2) = -0.19) was observed. These data provide new evidences that a relationship between trunk fat mass, insulin sensitivity, OSCA and T synthesis occurs. This new relationship with skeletal health has relevant implications for the aging male, suggesting OSCA as a novel marker of metabolic and gonadal health status.

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