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J Am Coll Cardiol. 2016 Oct 4;68(14):1509-21. doi: 10.1016/j.jacc.2016.06.067.

Association of Changes in Abdominal Fat Quantity and Quality With Incident Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors.

Author information

1
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's Division of Intramural Research, the Framingham Heart Study, and the Population Studies Branch, Framingham, Massachusetts.
2
Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts.
3
Department of Biostatistics, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts.
4
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute's Division of Intramural Research, the Framingham Heart Study, and the Population Studies Branch, Framingham, Massachusetts; Division of Endocrinology, Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. Electronic address: foxca@nhlbi.nih.gov.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and visceral adipose tissue (VAT) are associated with adverse cardiometabolic risk profiles.

OBJECTIVES:

This study explored the degree to which changes in abdominal fat quantity and quality are associated with changes in cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors.

METHODS:

Study participants (n = 1,106; 44.1% women; mean baseline age 45.1 years) were drawn from the Framingham Heart Study Third Generation cohort who participated in the computed tomography (CT) substudy Exams 1 and 2. Participants were followed for 6.1 years on average. Abdominal adipose tissue volume in cm(3) and attenuation in Hounsfield units (HU) were determined by CT-acquired abdominal scans.

RESULTS:

The mean fat volume change was an increase of 602 cm(3) for SAT and an increase of 703 cm(3) for VAT; the mean fat attenuation change was a decrease of 5.5 HU for SAT and an increase of 0.07 HU for VAT. An increase in fat volume and decrease in fat attenuation were associated with adverse changes in CVD risk factors. An additional 500 cm(3) increase in fat volume was associated with incident hypertension (odds ratio [OR]: 1.21 for SAT; OR: 1.30 for VAT), hypertriglyceridemia (OR: 1.15 for SAT; OR: 1.56 for VAT), and metabolic syndrome (OR: 1.43 for SAT; OR: 1.82 for VAT; all p < 0.05). Similar trends were observed for each additional 5 HU decrease in abdominal adipose tissue attenuation. Most associations remained significant even after further accounting for body mass index change, waist circumference change, or respective abdominal adipose tissue volumes.

CONCLUSIONS:

Increasing accumulation of fat quantity and decreasing fat attenuation are associated with worsening of CVD risk factors beyond the associations with generalized adiposity, central adiposity, or respective adipose tissue volumes.

KEYWORDS:

cardiovascular disease; computed tomography; epidemiology; fat attenuation; subcutaneous adipose tissue; visceral adipose tissue

PMID:
27687192
PMCID:
PMC5599249
DOI:
10.1016/j.jacc.2016.06.067
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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