Liver enzymes and clustering cardiometabolic risk factors in European adolescents: The HELENA study

I. Labayen, J. R. Ruiz, F. B. Ortega, C. L. Davis, G. Rodríguez, M. González-Gross, C. Breidenassel, J. Dallongeville, A. Marcos, K. Widhalm, A. Kafatos, D. Molnar, S. Dehenauw, F. Gottrand, L. A. Moreno

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives This study aimed to explore the associations of liver biomarkers with cardiometabolic risk factors and their clustering, and to provide reference values (percentiles) and cut-off points for liver biomarkers associated with high cardiometabolic risk in European adolescents. Methods Alanine aminotransferase (ALT), gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT), aspartate aminotransferase to ALT ratio (AST/ALT), waist circumference, blood pressure, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol and insulin were measured in 1084 adolescents. We computed a continuous cardiometabolic risk score and defined the high cardiometabolic risk. Results Higher ALT and GGT and lower AST/ALT were associated with adiposity and with the number of adverse cardiometabolic risk factors (Ps < 0.05). Higher GGT and lower AST/ALT were associated with higher cardiometabolic risk score (Ps < 0.001) in males and females, and ALT only in males (Ps < 0.001). Gender- and age-specific percentiles for liver biomarkers were provided. Receiver operating characteristic analyses showed a significant discriminatory accuracy of AST/ALT in identifying the low/high cardiometabolic risk (Ps < 0.01) and thresholds were provided. Conclusions Higher GGT and lower AST/ALT are associated with higher cardiometabolic risk factors and their clustering in male and female European adolescents, whereas the associations of ALT were gender dependent. Our results suggest the usefulness of AST/ALT as a screening test in the assessment of adolescents with high cardiometabolic risk and provide gender- and age-specific thresholds that might be of clinical interest.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-370
Number of pages10
JournalPediatric Obesity
Volume10
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2015

Keywords

  • Liver
  • adolescents
  • cardiometabolic risk factors
  • obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Health Policy
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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    Labayen, I., Ruiz, J. R., Ortega, F. B., Davis, C. L., Rodríguez, G., González-Gross, M., Breidenassel, C., Dallongeville, J., Marcos, A., Widhalm, K., Kafatos, A., Molnar, D., Dehenauw, S., Gottrand, F., & Moreno, L. A. (2015). Liver enzymes and clustering cardiometabolic risk factors in European adolescents: The HELENA study. Pediatric Obesity, 10(5), 361-370. https://doi.org/10.1111/ijpo.273