The inverse association between socioeconomic status and cardiovascular disease is well documented. We examined whether the impact of health counselling on cardiovascular risk factors in middle-aged men differed according to socioeconomic status.
We used data from a community based study assessing the risk for cardiovascular disease among middle-aged men in Helsinki, Finland. Traditional cardiovascular disease risk factors were measured and cardiovascular disease risk was assessed by a modified risk tool used in the North Karelia project (CVD Risk Score). Those men with increased risk for cardiovascular disease at their baseline visit in 2006 received lifestyle counselling. After two years these high-risk men were invited to a follow-up visit. The same measurements and risk assessments were repeated.
Based on the CVD Risk Score there were significant differences between the groups at baseline (p = 0.001) and at follow-up (p<0.001) with the highest scores in the lowest educational group. There were no significant differences in traditional cardiovascular risk factors according to educational attainment between groups either at baseline or at follow-up. Baseline lifestyle characteristics differed between the groups regarding use of soft fat (p = 0.019). All groups responded positively to lifestyle counselling.
The present study showed that lifestyle counselling is feasible in high-risk middle-aged men and lifestyle intervention works in all educational groups. Interestingly the traditional risk factors did not show improvement, but the risk score improved. From a practical point of view our findings stress the importance of using risk score calculators in health counselling instead of looking at individual cardiovascular disease risk factors.
Increase in height in modern societies has been accompanied by an in increase in lifespan. The longer lives of taller people suggest that good nutrition during childhood, together with freedom from recurrent minor infection, prolong human life. There is, however, a caveat. Tall adult stature may be the result of rapid “compensatory” growth following a setback. Compensatory growth is known to reduce the lifespan of animals, possibly because it is disorganized.
We analyzed lifespan among 6,975 men born in Helsinki, Finland, during 1934–44. Their early growth was recorded.
Boys who were tallest at seven years of age had lower all cause mortality, the hazard ratio being 0.79(95%CI 0.70 to 0.89, P < 0.0001) per 10 cm increase in height. There was, however, a group of boys among whom being tall was associated with increased all cause mortality, the hazard ratio being 1.32(1.00 to 1.75, P 5 0.05). These boys were taller at seven years than their birthweight and length at birth predicted. After they were excluded from the analysis, boys who were more than 126 cm in height at seven lived for eight years longer than those who were 114 cm or less. This increase in lifespan was similar to the effect of high socio-economic status in adult life.
Rapid growth in childhood height usually predicts a longer life. But tallness among men may be a misleading indicator of wellbeing and longer life expectancy in populations where compensatory growth is widespread. African Americans may be an example.
Among women attending antenatal clinics during 1934–1944 a large intercristal diameter, the maximum distance between the pelvic iliac crests, was associated with a raised incidence of breast and ovarian cancer in the daughters in later life. At puberty, the intercristal diameter of girls enlarges rapidly under the influence of estrogen. We speculated that high maternal estrogen concentrations during pregnancy initiate hormonal cancers in their daughters. Here, we examine the association between the mothers’ intercristal diameters and prostate cancer in their sons.
Using the national cancer registry we identified 221 cases of prostate cancer among 6,975 men born during 1934–1944 in Helsinki, Finland. Four thousand four hundred and one of these men had their mother’s bony pelvic measurements recorded: there were 149 cases among them.
Hazard ratios for prostate cancer rose as the mother’s intercristal diameter increased; but this association was restricted to men who were born before 40 weeks of gestation. Among these men the hazard ratio was 1.27 (95% CI 1.09–1.48; P = 0.002). The hazard ratio was 2.2 (1.3–3.7; P < 0.001) in men whose mothers weighed more than 80 kg in late pregnancy compared with those whose mothers weighed 60 kg or less.
These findings are consistent with a conceptual framework for the origins of hormonally dependent cancers that invokes exposure of embryonic tissue to maternal sex hormones followed by resetting of the fetal hypothalamic-gonadotropin axis in late gestation. We hypothesize that compensatory prepubertal growth among girls is associated with hormonal cancers in the next generation.
Hypertension is more common among people who had low birthweight. Birthweight depends on the mother’s body size and on the growth of the placenta. We studied a group of 2003 subjects, of whom 644 were being treated for hypertension. They were born during 1934–44 in a hospital that kept detailed records of maternal and placental size. Hypertension was associated with reduced placental weight and surface area. These associations were strongest in the offspring of mothers with below average height or low socioeconomic status. In people whose mothers had below average height (160 cm) the prevalence of hypertension fell from 38% if the placental area was 200 cm2 or less to 21% if the area was more than 320 cm2 (p=0.0007). In the offspring of tall, middle class mothers, who were likely to have been the best nourished, hypertension was predicted by large placental weight in relation to birthweight. The odds ratio rose from 1.0 if the ratio of placental weight to birthweight was 0.17 or less to 1.9 (95% confidence interval 0.8 to 5.0) if the ratio was more than 0.21 (p for trend =0.03). We conclude that the effects of placental area on hypertension depend on the mother’s nutritional state. Poor maternal nutrition may compound the adverse effects of small placental size. In better-nourished mothers the placental surface may expand to compensate for fetal undernutrition. Growth along the minor axis of the surface may be more nutritionally sensitive than growth along the major axis.
placental area; compensatory expansion; hypertension
The growth of every human fetus is constrained by the limited capacity of the mother and placenta to deliver nutrients to it. At birth, boys tend to be longer than girls at any placental weight. Boy’s placentas may therefore be more efficient than girls, but may have less reserve capacity. In the womb boys grow faster than girls and are therefore at greater risk of becoming undernourished. Fetal undernutrition leads to small size at birth and cardiovascular disorders, including hypertension, in later life. We studied 2003 men and women aged around 62 years who were born in Helsinki, Finland, of whom 644 had hypertension: we examined their body and placental size at birth. In both sexes, hypertension was associated with low birth weight. In men, hypertension was also associated with a long minor diameter of the placental surface. The dangerous growth strategy of boys may be compounded by the costs of compensatory placental enlargement in late gestation. In women, hypertension was associated with a small placental area, which may reduce nutrient delivery to the fetus. In men, hypertension was linked to the mothers’ socioeconomic status, an indicator of their diets: in women it was linked to the mothers’ heights, an indicator of their protein metabolism. Boys’ greater dependence on their mothers’ diets may enable them to capitalize on an improving food supply, but it makes them vulnerable to food shortages. The ultimate manifestation of their dangerous strategies may be that men have higher blood pressures and shorter lives than women.
Sleep disorders and subjective sleep complaints have been associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes. The evidence with respect to insulin resistance (IR) and insulin secretion in individuals without type 2 diabetes has been scarce and elusive. We examined if subjective sleep complaints and their co-occurrence were associated with IR and insulin secretion in adult women and men without diabetes.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
Women (n = 442) and men (n = 354) 18–75 years of age without type 2 diabetes underwent an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), with insulin and glucose measured at fasting and at 30 and 120 min. Complaints related to sleep apnea, insomnia, and daytime sleepiness were self-rated with the Basic Nordic Sleep Questionnaire.
In comparison with individuals with no or minor sleep complaints, those with more frequent complaints of sleep apnea, insomnia, and daytime sleepiness were more insulin resistant, as evidenced by higher fasting insulin concentrations and insulin and glucose responses to OGTT, and more frequently had high homeostasis model assessment of IR and low insulin sensitivity index values. The likelihood of being insulin resistant increased significantly and linearly according to the accumulation of co-occurring sleep complaints. These associations changed only a little when adjusted for mediating and confounding factors and for depressive symptoms. Sleep complaints were not associated with indices of deficiency in insulin secretion.
Subjective sleep complaints were associated with IR. The likelihood of being insulin resistant increased according to accumulation of co-occurring sleep complaints. Sleep complaints were not associated with deficiency in insulin secretion.
An association between vitamin B12 levels and depressive symptoms (DS) has been reported in several epidemiological studies. The purpose of this study was to evaluate vitamin B12 levels in population-based samples with melancholic or non-melancholic DS as the relationship between vitamin B12 levels and different subtypes of DS has not been evaluated in previous studies.
Subjects without previously known type 2 diabetes, aged 45–74 years were randomly selected from the National Population Register as a part of the Finnish diabetes prevention programme (FIN-D2D). The study population (N = 2806, participation rate 62%) consisted of 1328 men and 1478 women. The health examinations were carried out between October and December 2007 according to the WHO MONICA protocol. The assessment of DS was based on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI, cut-off ≥10 points). A DSM-IV- criteria based summary score of melancholic items in the BDI was used in dividing the participants with DS (N = 429) into melancholic (N = 138) and non-melancholic DS (N = 291) subgroups. In the statistical analysis we used chi-squared test, t-test, permutation test, analysis of covariance, multivariate logistic regression analysis and multinomial regression model.
The mean vitamin B12 level was 331±176 pmol/L in those without DS while the subjects with non-melancholic DS had a mean vitamin B12 level of 324 ± 135 pmol/L, and those with melancholic DS had the lowest mean vitamin B12 level of 292±112 pmol/L (p < 0.001 after adjusted for age, sex, use of antidepressive medication and chronic diseases sum index). The adjusted difference of vitamin B12 levels between the non-melancholic and the melancholic group was 33 pmol/L (95%CI 8 to 57, p = 0.008). Melancholic DS and vitamin B12 levels showed an independent linearly inverse association. The relative risk ratio (RRR) for melancholic DS was 2.75 (95%CI 1.66 to 4.56) in the lowest vitamin B12 level tertile versus the highest (p for linearity <0.001) when those without DS formed the reference group. The RRR in the non-melancholic subgroup was nonsignificant.
The vitamin B12 level was associated with melancholic DS but not with non-melancholic DS.
Beck depression inventory; Melancholic depressive symptoms; Non-melancholic depressive symptoms; Population-based; Vitamin B12
The influence of environmental conditions early in life – including temperature and season – on health later in life has so far not attracted much attention.
Using data from the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study of 13,345 men and women, the influence of temperature and season at month of conception on birth weight, and on cardiovascular diseases and obesity-related traits in later life was studied.
Linear regressions were fitted to examine the relationship between birth weight/obesity-related variables/hypertension and alternatively month of conception and average temperature of month of conception. The incidence of both coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease was assumed to follow a Weibull hazard model, and was modelled accordingly using survival analysis techniques.
In women, unusually cold temperatures at month of conception predicted lower body mass index (BMI) and fat percentage, and protected from obesity. Warmer temperatures at month of conception were associated with higher risk for hypertension. In men, warmer temperatures around conception predicted lower BMI. No seasonal influences were detected on obesity-related variables, nor were there seasonal or temperature mediated influences on birth weight, coronary heart disease or cerebrovascular disease observed.
We suggest that ambient temperature has an influence on obesity-related outcomes and hypertension. This merits further study, also with regard to other health outcomes and from a global perspective.
temperature; seasonality; obesity; hypertension; cardiovascular disease
Although insulin resistance (IR) may underlie associations between depressive symptoms and diabetes, previous findings have been contradictory. We examined whether depressive symptoms associate with IR and insulin secretion, and, additionally, whether antidepressant medication use may modulate such associations.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
A total of 4,419 individuals underwent an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). Participants with previously or newly diagnosed diabetes are excluded from this sample. The homeostasis model assessment of IR (HOMA-IR) and corrected insulin response (CIR) were calculated. Depressive symptoms and antidepressant medication use were self-reported.
After controlling for confounding factors, depressive symptoms were associated with higher fasting and 30-min insulin during the OGTT and higher HOMA-IR but not CIR. Antidepressant medication use failed to modify these associations.
Depressive symptoms are associated with IR but not with changes in insulin response when corrected for IR in individuals without previously or newly diagnosed diabetes.
People whose birthweights were towards the lower end of the normal range are at increased risk of coronary heart disease. This is attributed to foetal programming through malnutrition, but the cause of the malnutrition is unknown.
Methods and results
We studied 6975 men born in Helsinki during 1934–44. Their size at birth was recorded. Babies who later developed coronary heart disease tended to have a low ponderal index (birthweight/length3). Three different placental phenotypes predicted the disease. In primiparous mothers who were short, having below median height, the hazard ratio for the disease was 1.14 (95% confidence interval 1.08–1.21, P< 0.0001) for each centimetre increase in the difference between the length and breadth of the placental surface. In tall mothers whose body mass index was above the median, the hazard ratio was 1.25 (1.10–1.42, P= 0.0007) per 40 cm2 decrease in the surface area. In tall mothers whose body mass index was below the median, the hazard ratio was 1.07 (1.02–1.13, P= 0.01) per 1% increase in the placental weight/birthweight ratio.
Three different combinations of maternal and placental size predicted coronary heart disease. The mother's body size determines the availability of nutrients and is linked to the development and function of the placenta, reflected in its shape and size. We speculate that variations in three processes of normal placental development lead to foetal malnutrition. The processes are (i) implantation and spiral artery invasion, (ii) growth of the chorionic surface, and (iii) compensatory expansion of the chorionic surface.
Foetal programming; Birthweight; Maternal body size; Placental size; Coronary disease; Placenta; Epidemiology
The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is increasing alarmingly in both developed and developing countries. Recently, exposure to persistent organic pollutants (POPs) has been associated with the prevalence of type 2 diabetes. The purpose of this cross-sectional study is to examine the association between type 2 diabetes and POP exposure in the Helsinki Birth Cohort Study.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
The cohort consists of 8,760 people born in Helsinki during 1934–1944, before the global POP emission peak. In 2003, a clinical examination was performed, including blood sampling for laboratory analyses of serum lipids and POPs. Complete data from the examination were available for 1,988 participants. The concentrations of each POP were categorized into four groups on the basis of percentile intervals, and logistic regression was performed to examine diabetes prevalence across the POP categories, adjusting for sex, age, waist circumference, and mean arterial pressure and using the lowest category as the reference group.
Among the participants with the highest exposure to oxychlordane, trans-nonachlor, 1,1-dichloro-2,2-bis-(p-chlorophenyl)-ethylene (p,p’-DDE, and polychlorinated biphenyl 153, the risk of type 2 diabetes was 1.64–2.24 times higher than that among individuals with the lowest exposure (Plin = 0.003–0.050, where Plin is the P value for linear trend across POP categories). In the stratified analysis, the associations between type 2 diabetes and oxychlordane and trans-nonachlor remained significant and were strongest among the overweight participants. Exposure to 2,2′,4,4′-tetrabromodiphenyl ether (BDE 47) and 2,2′,4,4′,5,5′-hexabromodiphenyl ether (BDE 153) was not associated with type 2 diabetes.
This study confirms the association between type 2 diabetes and adult-only exposure to organochlorine pesticides in a general urban population.
Abdominal obesity is a more important risk factor than overall obesity in predicting the development of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. From a preventive and public health point of view it is crucial that risk factors are identified at an early stage, in order to change and modify behaviour and lifestyle in high risk individuals.
Data from a community based study was used to assess the risk for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and prevalence of metabolic syndrome in middle-aged men. In order to identify those with increased risk for type 2 diabetes and/or cardiovascular disease sensitivity and specificity analysis were performed, including calculation of positive and negative predictive values, and corresponding 95% CI for eleven different cut-off points, with 1 cm intervals (92 to 102 cm), for waist circumference.
A waist circumference ≥94 cm in middle-aged men, identified those with increased risk for type 2 diabetes and/or for cardiovascular disease with a sensitivity of 84.4% (95% CI 76.4% to 90.0%), and a specificity of 78.2% (95% CI 68.4% to 85.5%). The positive predictive value was 82.9% (95% CI 74.8% to 88.8%), and negative predictive value 80.0%, respectively (95% CI 70.3% to 87.1%).
Measurement of waist circumference in middle-aged men is a reliable test to identify individuals at increased risk for type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. This measurement should be used more frequently in daily practice in primary care in order to identify individuals at risk and when planning health counselling and interventions.
Waist circumference; Type 2 diabetes; Cardiovascular disease; Middle-aged men
Obesity is programmed in utero and small babies generally have small placentas. In some circumstances, an undernourished fetus can expand its placental surface to extract more nutrients. We hypothesize that this results in an imbalanced nutrient supply to the fetus leading to obesity. To determine whether placental size determines overweight and body composition, we studied 2003 subjects in adult life. Associations between placental surface area and indices of overweight were restricted to people who carried the Pro12Pro genotype of the PPARγ2 gene. For every 1 SD increase in placental surface area, the odds ratio for overweight was 1.37 (95% CI 1.10 to 1.71; P = 0.005). Expansion of the placental surface in compensation for fetal undernutrition increases the risk of overweight and a higher body fat percentage in people carrying the Pro12Pro genotype. We suggest that similar underlying multifactorial mechanisms affect the development of obesity in general.
Leukocyte telomere length (TL) is considered a biomarker for biological aging. Shortened TL has been observed in many complex diseases, including type 2 diabetes (T2DM). Lifestyle intervention studies, e.g. the Diabetes Prevention Study (DPS), have shown a decrease in the incidence of T2DM by promoting healthy lifestyles in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT). Our aim was to study in the DPS the influence of the lifestyle intervention on TL. TL was measured by quantitative PCR-based method at two time points (N = 334 and 343) on average 4.5 years apart during the active intervention and post-intervention follow-up. TL inversely correlated with age. Our main finding was that TL increased in about two thirds of the individuals both in the intervention and in the control groups during follow-up; TL increased most in individuals with the shortest TL at the first measurement. TL was not associated with development of T2DM, nor did lifestyle intervention have an effect on TL. No association between insulin secretion or insulin resistance indices and TL was observed. We did not detect an association between TL and development of T2DM in the DPS participants. It could be due to all participants being overweight and having IGT at baseline, both of which have been found to be independently associated with shorter leukocyte TL in some earlier studies. TL had no substantial role in worsening of glucose tolerance in people with IGT. Our study confirms that leukocyte TL can increase with time even in obese people with impaired glucose metabolism.
Processing speed is an important cognitive function that is compromised in psychiatric illness (e.g., schizophrenia, depression) and old age; it shares genetic background with complex cognition (e.g., working memory, reasoning). To find genes influencing speed we performed a genome-wide association scan in up to three cohorts: Brisbane (mean age 16 years; N = 1659); LBC1936 (mean age 70 years, N = 992); LBC1921 (mean age 82 years, N = 307), and; HBCS (mean age 64 years, N = 1080). Meta-analysis of the common measures highlighted various suggestively significant (p < 1.21 × 10−5) SNPs and plausible candidate genes (e.g., TRIB3). A biological pathways analysis of the speed factor identified two common pathways from the KEGG database (cell junction, focal adhesion) in two cohorts, while a pathway analysis linked to the GO database revealed common pathways across pairs of speed measures (e.g., receptor binding, cellular metabolic process). These highlighted genes and pathways will be able to inform future research, including results for psychiatric disease.
Information processing speed; Cognitive ability; Genes; Biological pathways
Although genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified hundreds of complex trait loci, the pathomechanisms of most remain elusive. Studying the genetics of risk factors predisposing to disease is an attractive approach to identify targets for functional studies. Intracranial aneurysms (IA) are rupture-prone pouches at cerebral artery branching sites. IA is a complex disease for which GWAS have identified five loci with strong association and a further 14 loci with suggestive association. To decipher potential underlying disease mechanisms, we tested whether there are IA loci that convey their effect through elevating blood pressure (BP), a strong risk factor of IA. We performed a meta-analysis of four population-based Finnish cohorts (nFIN = 11 266) not selected for IA, to assess the association of previously identified IA candidate loci (n = 19) with BP. We defined systolic BP (SBP), diastolic BP, mean arterial pressure, and pulse pressure as quantitative outcome variables. The most significant result was further tested for association in the ICBP-GWAS cohort of 200 000 individuals. We found that the suggestive IA locus at 5q23.2 in PRDM6 was significantly associated with SBP in individuals of European descent (pFIN = 3.01E-05, pICBP-GWAS = 0.0007, pALL = 8.13E-07). The risk allele of IA was associated with higher SBP. PRDM6 encodes a protein predominantly expressed in vascular smooth muscle cells. Our study connects a complex disease (IA) locus with a common risk factor for the disease (SBP). We hypothesize that common variants in PRDM6 can contribute to altered vascular wall structure, hence increasing SBP and predisposing to IA. True positive associations often fail to reach genome-wide significance in GWAS. Our findings show that analysis of traditional risk factors as intermediate phenotypes is an effective tool for deciphering hidden heritability. Further, we demonstrate that common disease loci identified in a population isolate may bear wider significance.
When multiple genes or genetic regions contribute to the inherited risk of a disease, it is referred to as a complex disease. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) aim to detect common genetic variations that associate with complex traits or diseases. Although GWAS have been successful in identifying strongly associated genetic loci, they lack the means to point out true, but less strong, associations. Studying conditions that are related to the disease of interest can help sort out less strong associations. Intracranial aneurysms (IA) are berry-like dilations in cerebral arteries. Most IAs do not give symptoms until they bleed, causing a highly fatal form of stroke. Half of the people who suffer bleeding of an IA die. IA is a complex disease. Both inherited risk and environmental factors contribute to the risk of developing IA. Women, smokers, those with high alcohol intake or high blood pressure are more prone to develop IA and bleeding. GWAS found 19 genetic regions increasing the risk of IA. Here we show that one of these loci, on the long arm of chromosome 5, in addition to raising IA risk also increases systolic blood pressure. We speculate that the cause is modified vascular wall structure.
We aimed to investigate the influence of positive family history (FH+) of diabetes and 19 known genetic risk loci on the effectiveness of lifestyle changes and their predictive value on the incidence of type 2 diabetes in the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study (DPS).
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
A total of 522 subjects with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) were randomized into the control (n = 257) and intervention (n = 265) groups. The mean follow-up was 6.2 years (median 7 years), and the lifestyle intervention, aimed at weight reduction, healthy diet, and increased physical activity, lasted for 4 years (range 1–6 years). An oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) and assessment of basic clinical variables were performed annually.
The effect of intervention on the incidence of diabetes was almost similar in subjects with FH+ compared with subjects with a negative family history (FH−) of diabetes during the entire follow-up. In the Cox model, including FH, genetic risk SNPs, and randomization group, and adjusted for the effects of age, sex, BMI, and study center, only lifestyle intervention had a significant effect (hazard ratio 0.55, 95% CI 0.41–0.75, P < 0.001) on the incidence of diabetes. Further analyses showed that in addition to the baseline glucose and insulin values, 1-year changes in 2-h glucose and 2-h insulin achieved by lifestyle intervention had a significant effect on the incidence of diabetes.
These results emphasize the effectiveness of lifestyle intervention in reducing the risk of diabetes in high-risk individuals independently of genetic or familial risk of type 2 diabetes.
The association between low birth weight and type 2 diabetes is well established. We studied whether preterm birth carries a similar risk.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
The Helsinki Birth Cohort includes 13,345 men and women born between 1934 and 1944. Of them, 12,813 had adequate data on length of gestation, which we linked with data on special reimbursement for diabetes medication.
Of the subjects, 5.1% had received special reimbursement after age 40. In subjects born before 35 weeks of gestation, the odds ratio for diabetes was 1.68 (95% CI 1.06–2.65) compared with that in those born at term. After adjustment for birth weight relative to length of gestation, the odds ratio was 1.59 (1.00–2.52).
Preterm birth before 35 weeks of gestation is associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in adult life. The risk is independent of that associated with slow fetal growth.
Empirical evidence suggests that prenatal growth is associated with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and its symptoms. Data on the importance of postnatal growth is, however scanty. We studied whether pre- and postnatal growth up to 56 months is associated with symptoms of ADHD in children.
A longitudinal regional birth cohort study comprising 893 children followed up to 56 months. The associations between pre- and postnatal growth and parent-rated ADHD symptoms of the child were analyzed with multiple linear regression analyses and repeated-measures analyzes of covariance.
Children born lighter, thinner, shorter, and with a smaller head circumference, adjusted for length of gestation, received higher parent-rated ADHD symptoms scores at 56 months. Further, smaller head circumference throughout the period of growth from birth up to 56 months was related to higher ADHD symptoms scores. The associations changed only little after adjusting for several pre- and neonatal factors. The associations were not modified by sex and there were no evidence of non-linear associations.
Slower prenatal growth in weight, body-mass index, length, and head circumference may pose a risk for higher ADHD symptoms in childhood. The consistently smaller head circumference from birth up to 56 months characterizing children with higher ADHD symptoms may point to a lack of catch-up growth in head circumference in childhood as a predisposing factor.
Adiponectin is an adipokine with insulin-sensitising and anti-atherogenic effects. Two receptors for adiponectin, ADIPOR1 and ADIPOR2, have been characterized that mediate effects of adiponectin in various tissues. We examined whether genetic variation in ADIPOR2 predicts the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and/or Type 2 Diabetes (T2DM) in individuals with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) participating the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study (DPS).
CVD morbidity and mortality data were collected during a median follow-up of 10.2 years (range 1-13 years) and conversion from IGT to T2DM was assessed during a median follow-up of 7 years (range 1-11 years). Altogether eight SNPs in the ADIPOR2 locus were genotyped in 484 participants of the DPS. Moreover, the same SNPs were genotyped and the mRNA expression levels of ADIPOR2 were determined in peripheral blood mononuclear cells and subcutaneous adipose tissue samples derived from 56 individuals participating in the Genobin study.
In the DPS population, four SNPs (rs10848554, rs11061937, rs1058322, rs16928751) were associated with CVD risk, and two remained significant (p = 0.014 for rs11061937 and p = 0.020 for rs1058322) when all four were included in the same multi-SNP model. Furthermore, the individuals homozygous for the rare minor alleles of rs11061946 and rs11061973 had increased risk of converting from IGT to T2DM. Allele-specific differences in the mRNA expression levels for the rs1058322 variant were seen in peripheral blood mononuclear cells derived from participants of the Genobin study.
Our results suggest that SNPs in the ADIPOR2 may modify the risk of CVD in individuals with IGT, possibly through alterations in the mRNA expression levels. In addition an independent genetic signal in ADIPOR2 locus may have an impact on the risk of developing T2DM in individuals with IGT.
Trial registration number
Adiponectin; adiponectin receptor 2; gene; single nucleotide polymorphism; cardiovascular disease; type 2 diabetes
Low birth weight and slow growth during infancy are associated with increased rates of chronic diseases in adulthood. Associations with risk factors such as fasting glucose and lipids concentrations are weaker than expected based on associations with disease. This could be explained by differences in postprandial responses, which, however, have been little studied. Our aim was to examine the impact of growth during infancy on postprandial responses to a fast-food meal (FF-meal) and a meal, which followed the macro-nutrient composition of the dietary guidelines (REC-meal).
We recruited 24 overweight 65–75 year-old subjects, 12 with slow growth during infancy (SGI-group) and 12 with normal early growth. All the subjects were born at term. The study meals were isocaloric and both meals were consumed once. Plasma glucose, insulin, triglycerides (TG) and free fatty acids (FFA) were measured in fasting state and over a 4-h period after both meals. Subjects who grew slowly during infancy were also smaller at birth. Fasting glucose, insulin or lipid concentrations did not differ significantly between the groups. The TG responses were higher for the SGI-group both during the FF-meal (P = 0.047) and the REC-meal (P = 0.058). The insulin responses were significantly higher for the SGI-group after the FF-meal (P = 0.036). Glucose and FFA responses did not differ significantly between the groups.
Small birth size and slow early growth predict postprandial TG and insulin responses. Elevated responses might be one explanation why subjects who were small at birth and experiencing slow growth in infancy are at an increased risk of developing cardiovascular diseases in later life.
We examined temporal associations between objectively-measured physical activity (PA) during the day and in the evening, and sleep quantity and quality.
PA and sleep were measured by actigraphs for an average of one week in an epidemiological cohort study of 275 eight-year-old children.
For each one standard deviation (SD) unit of increased PA during the day, sleep duration was decreased by 0.30, sleep efficiency by 0.16, and sleep fragmentation increased by 0.08 SD units that night. For each one SD unit increase in sleep duration and efficiency the preceding night, PA the following day decreased by 0.09 and 0.16 SD units, respectively. When we contrasted days with a high amount of moderate to vigorous activity during the day or in the evening to days with a more sedentary profile, the results were essentially similar. However, moderate to vigorous PA in the evening shortened sleep latency.
The relationship between a higher level of PA and poorer sleep is bidirectional. These within-person findings challenge epidemiological findings showing that more active people report better sleep. Since only a few studies using objective measurements of both PA and sleep have been conducted in children, further studies are needed to confirm/refute these results.
Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) is a major factor influencing health and disease outcomes including all-cause mortality and cardiovascular disease. Importantly CRF is also modifiable and could therefore have a major public health impact. Early life exposures play a major role in chronic disease development. Our aim was to explore the potential prenatal and childhood origins of CRF in later life.
This sub-study of the HBCS (Helsinki Birth Cohort Study) includes 606 men and women who underwent a thorough clinical examination and participated in the UKK 2-km walk test, which has been validated against a maximal exercise stress test as a measure of CRF in population studies. Data on body size at birth and growth during infancy and childhood were obtained from hospital, child welfare and school health records. Body size at birth was not associated with adult CRF. A 1 cm increase in height at 2 and 7 years was associated with 0.21 ml/kg/min (95% CI 0.02 to 0.40) and 0.16 ml/kg/min (95% CI 0.03 to 0.28) higher VO2max, respectively. Adjustment for adult lean body mass strengthened these findings. Weight at 2 and 7 years and height at 11 years became positively associated with CRF after adult lean body mass adjustment. However, a 1 kg/m2 higher BMI at 11 years was associated with −0.57 ml/kg/min (95% CI −0.91 to −0.24) lower adult VO2max, and remained so after adjustment for adult lean body mass.
We did not observe any significant associations between body size at birth and CRF in later life. However, childhood growth was associated with CRF in adulthood. These findings suggest, importantly from a public point of view, that early growth may play a role in predicting adult CRF.
To assess the effects of leisure-time physical activity (LTPA) and resistance training on metabolic syndrome (MetS) and its components in a post hoc analysis of the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study, a randomized controlled lifestyle counseling trial.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
A cohort of 486 middle-aged overweight men and women with impaired glucose tolerance were followed for an average of 4.1 years. The intervention and control groups were combined in the analyses. LTPA was assessed by questionnaires, dietary intake by food records, and features of the MetS by anthropometric and biochemical measures annually. Resistance training sessions were documented for 137 participants.
Increased moderate-to-vigorous LTPA, even after adjustments for changes in dietary intakes of total and saturated fat, fiber, and energy, and change in BMI was associated with a greater likelihood for resolution (29.7 vs. 19.1%; P = 0.004 in the upper versus lower third of change) and a lesser likelihood for development (23.5 vs. 44.7%; P = 0.041) of the MetS. Of the components of the MetS, the increase in moderate-to-vigorous LTPA was associated most strongly with improvement of glycemia. Among the 137 participants who participated in resistance training, MetS components were favorable in individuals who were in the upper third of participation rate (median 51 times/year) compared with individuals in the lowest third (median 8.5 times/year).
Increased moderate-to-vigorous LTPA was associated with a decreased likelihood of developing the MetS and an increased likelihood of its resolution in individuals at high risk for type 2 diabetes.