Publications by authors named "Barbara Thorand"

263 Publications

Natriuretic Peptides and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes: Results From the Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Risk Assessment in Europe (BiomarCaRE) Consortium.

Diabetes Care 2021 Sep 14. Epub 2021 Sep 14.

Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München-German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.

Objective: Natriuretic peptide (NP) concentrations are increased in cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) but are associated with a lower diabetes risk. We investigated associations of N-terminal pro-B-type NP (NT-proBNP) and midregional proatrial NP (MR-proANP) with incident type 2 diabetes stratified by the presence of CVD.

Research Design And Methods: Based on the Biomarkers for Cardiovascular Risk Assessment in Europe (BiomarCaRE) Consortium, we included 45,477 participants with NT-proBNP measurements (1,707 developed type 2 diabetes over 6.5 years of median follow-up; among these, 209 had CVD at baseline) and 11,537 participants with MR-proANP measurements (857 developed type 2 diabetes over 13.8 years of median follow-up; among these, 106 had CVD at baseline). The associations were estimated using multivariable Cox regression models.

Results: Both NPs were inversely associated with incident type 2 diabetes (hazard ratios [95% CI] per 1-SD increase of log NP: 0.84 [0.79; 0.89] for NT-proBNP and 0.77 [0.71; 0.83] for MR-proANP). The inverse association between NT-proBNP and type 2 diabetes was significant in individuals without CVD but not in individuals with CVD (0.81 [0.76; 0.86] vs. 1.04 [0.90; 1.19]; multiplicative interaction = 0.001). There was no significant difference in the association of MR-proANP with type 2 diabetes between individuals without and with CVD (0.75 [0.69; 0.82] vs. 0.81 [0.66; 0.99]; multiplicative interaction = 0.236).

Conclusions: NT-proBNP and MR-proANP are inversely associated with incident type 2 diabetes. However, the inverse association of NT-proBNP seems to be modified by the presence of CVD. Further investigations are warranted to confirm our findings and to investigate the underlying mechanisms.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2337/dc21-0811DOI Listing
September 2021

Association of sex-specific differences in lipoprotein(a) concentrations with cardiovascular mortality in individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Cardiovasc Diabetol 2021 08 18;20(1):168. Epub 2021 Aug 18.

Department of Internal Medicine B, University Medicine Greifswald, Greifswald, Germany.

Background: Compared to individuals without type 2 diabetes mellitus, the relative increase in cardiovascular mortality is much higher in women than in men in individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

Methods: We evaluated data from 7443 individuals (3792 women, 50.9%), aged 20 to 81 years, from two independent population-based investigations, SHIP-0 and MONICA/KORA S3. We analyzed the longitudinal sex-specific associations of lipoprotein(a) with cardiovascular mortality in individuals with and without type 2 diabetes mellitus using Cox regression.

Results: During a median follow-up of 20.5 years (136,802 person-years), 657 participants (404 men and 253 women) died of cardiovascular causes. Among individuals without type 2 diabetes mellitus, men had a significantly higher risk for cardiovascular mortality compared to women in unadjusted model and after adjustment. On the other hand, in participants with type 2 diabetes mellitus, the risk for cardiovascular mortality was not different between men and women in the unadjusted model and after adjustment for age, body mass index, low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, fasting status and study sample (SHIP-0, MONICA/KORA S3). Further adjustment for lipoprotein(a) concentrations had no impact on the hazard ratio (HR) for cardiovascular mortality comparing men versus women in individuals without type 2 diabetes mellitus [HR: 1.94; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.63 to 2.32; p < 0.001]. In individuals with type 2 diabetes mellitus, however, further adjustment for lipoprotein(a) led to an increased risk for cardiovascular mortality in men and a decreased risk in women resulting in a statistically significant difference between men and women (HR: 1.53; 95% CI 1.04 to 2.24; p = 0.029).

Conclusions: Women are described to have a stronger relative increase in cardiovascular mortality than men when comparing individuals with and without type 2 diabetes mellitus. Higher lipoprotein(a) concentrations in women with type 2 diabetes mellitus than in men with type 2 diabetes mellitus might partially explain this finding.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12933-021-01363-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8375146PMC
August 2021

Serum uromodulin is inversely associated with biomarkers of subclinical inflammation in the population-based KORA F4 study.

Clin Kidney J 2021 Jun 6;14(6):1618-1625. Epub 2020 Sep 6.

Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik IV, Klinikum der Universität München, LMU, München, Germany.

Background: Uromodulin is a kidney-specific glycoprotein synthesized in tubular cells of Henle's loop exerting nephroprotective and immunomodulatory functions in the urinary tract. A small amount of uromodulin is also released into the systemic circulation, where its physiological role is unknown. Serum uromodulin (sUmod) has been associated with metabolic risk factors and with cardiovascular events and mortality, where these associations were partly stronger in men than in women. In this study, we investigated the associations of sUmod with biomarkers of subclinical inflammation in a population-based sample of women and men.

Methods: Associations of sUmod with 10 biomarkers of subclinical inflammation were assessed in 1065 participants of the Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) F4 study aged 62-81 years using linear regression models adjusted for sex, age, body mass index, estimated glomerular filtration rate and diabetes. Analyses were performed in the total study sample and stratified by sex.

Results: sUmod was inversely associated with white blood cell count, high-sensitive C-reactive protein, interleukin (IL)-6, tumour necrosis factor-α, myeloperoxidase, superoxide dismutase-3, IL-1 receptor antagonist and IL-22 after multivariable adjustment and correction for multiple testing (P < 0.001 for each observation). There was a trend towards a stronger association of sUmod with pro-inflammatory markers in men than in women, with a significant P for sex interaction (<0.001) regarding the relation of sUmod with IL-6.

Conclusions: sUmod was inversely associated with biomarkers of subclinical inflammation in older participants of the KORA F4 study. The association of sUmod with IL-6 differed between women and men. Future research should focus on whether the immunomodulatory properties of sUmod are one explanation for the association of sUmod with cardiovascular outcomes and mortality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ckj/sfaa165DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8248959PMC
June 2021

Proteomic profiling of low muscle and high fat mass: a machine learning approach in the KORA S4/FF4 study.

J Cachexia Sarcopenia Muscle 2021 Aug 20;12(4):1011-1023. Epub 2021 Jun 20.

Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health (GmbH), Neuherberg, Germany.

Background: The coexistence of low muscle mass and high fat mass, two interrelated conditions strongly associated with declining health status, has been characterized by only a few protein biomarkers. High-throughput proteomics enable concurrent measurement of numerous proteins, facilitating the discovery of potentially new biomarkers.

Methods: Data derived from the prospective population-based Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg S4/FF4 cohort study (median follow-up time: 13.5 years) included 1478 participants (756 men and 722 women) aged 55-74 years in the cross-sectional and 608 participants (315 men and 293 women) in the longitudinal analysis. Appendicular skeletal muscle mass (ASMM) and body fat mass index (BFMI) were determined through bioelectrical impedance analysis at baseline and follow-up. At baseline, 233 plasma proteins were measured using proximity extension assay. We implemented boosting with stability selection to enable false positives-controlled variable selection to identify new protein biomarkers of low muscle mass, high fat mass, and their combination. We evaluated prediction models developed based on group least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (lasso) with 100× bootstrapping by cross-validated area under the curve (AUC) to investigate if proteins increase the prediction accuracy on top of classical risk factors.

Results: In the cross-sectional analysis, we identified kallikrein-6, C-C motif chemokine 28 (CCL28), and tissue factor pathway inhibitor as previously unknown biomarkers for muscle mass [association with low ASMM: odds ratio (OR) per 1-SD increase in log2 normalized protein expression values (95% confidence interval (CI)): 1.63 (1.37-1.95), 1.31 (1.14-1.51), 1.24 (1.06-1.45), respectively] and serine protease 27 for fat mass [association with high BFMI: OR (95% CI): 0.73 (0.61-0.86)]. CCL28 and metalloproteinase inhibitor 4 (TIMP4) constituted new biomarkers for the combination of low muscle and high fat mass [association with low ASMM combined with high BFMI: OR (95% CI): 1.32 (1.08-1.61), 1.28 (1.03-1.59), respectively]. Including protein biomarkers selected in ≥90% of group lasso bootstrap iterations on top of classical risk factors improved the performance of models predicting low ASMM, high BFMI, and their combination [delta AUC (95% CI): 0.16 (0.13-0.20), 0.22 (0.18-0.25), 0.12 (0.08-0.17), respectively]. In the longitudinal analysis, N-terminal prohormone brain natriuretic peptide (NT-proBNP) was the only protein selected for loss in ASMM and loss in ASMM combined with gain in BFMI over 14 years [OR (95% CI): 1.40 (1.10-1.77), 1.60 (1.15-2.24), respectively].

Conclusions: Proteomic profiling revealed CCL28 and TIMP4 as new biomarkers of low muscle mass combined with high fat mass and NT-proBNP as a key biomarker of loss in muscle mass combined with gain in fat mass. Proteomics enable us to accelerate biomarker discoveries in muscle research.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jcsm.12733DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8350207PMC
August 2021

Alcohol intake and total mortality in 142 960 individuals from the MORGAM Project: a population-based study.

Addiction 2021 Jun 9. Epub 2021 Jun 9.

Department of Epidemiology and Prevention, IRCCS Neuromed, Pozzilli, Italy.

Aim: To test the association of alcohol consumption with total and cause-specific mortality risk.

Design: Prospective observational multi-centre population-based study.

Setting: Sixteen cohorts (15 from Europe) in the MOnica Risk, Genetics, Archiving and Monograph (MORGAM) Project.

Participants: A total of 142 960 individuals (mean age 50 ± 13 years, 53.9% men).

Measurements: Average alcohol intake by food frequency questionnaire, total and cause-specific mortality.

Findings: In comparison with life-time abstainers, consumption of alcohol less than 10 g/day was associated with an average 11% [95% confidence interval (CI) = 7-14%] reduction in the risk of total mortality, while intake > 20 g/day was associated with a 13% (95% CI = 7-20%) increase in the risk of total mortality. Comparable findings were observed for cardiovascular (CV) deaths. With regard to cancer, drinking up to 10 g/day was not associated with either mortality risk reduction or increase, while alcohol intake > 20 g/day was associated with a 22% (95% CI = 10-35%) increased risk of mortality. The association of alcohol with fatal outcomes was similar in men and women, differed somewhat between countries and was more apparent in individuals preferring wine, suggesting that benefits may not be due to ethanol but other ingredients. Mediation analysis showed that high-density lipoprotein cholesterol explained 2.9 and 18.7% of the association between low alcohol intake and total as well as CV mortality, respectively.

Conclusions: In comparison with life-time abstainers, consuming less than one drink per day (nadir at 5 g/day) was associated with a reduced risk of total, cardiovascular and other causes mortality, except cancer. Intake of more than two drinks per day was associated with an increased risk of total, cardiovascular and especially cancer mortality.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/add.15593DOI Listing
June 2021

Comparison of genetic risk prediction models to improve prediction of coronary heart disease in two large cohorts of the MONICA/KORA study.

Genet Epidemiol 2021 Sep 3;45(6):633-650. Epub 2021 Jun 3.

Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München - German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.

It is still unclear how genetic information, provided as single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), can be most effectively integrated into risk prediction models for coronary heart disease (CHD) to add significant predictive value beyond clinical risk models. For the present study, a population-based case-cohort was used as a trainingset (451 incident cases, 1488 noncases) and an independent cohort as testset (160 incident cases, 2749 noncases). The following strategies to quantify genetic information were compared: A weighted genetic risk score including Metabochip SNPs associated with CHD in the literature (GRS ); selection of the most predictive SNPs among these literature-confirmed variants using priority-Lasso (PL ); validation of two comprehensive polygenic risk scores: GRS based on Metabochip data, and GRS (available in the testset only) based on cross-validated genome-wide genotyping data. We used Cox regression to assess associations with incident CHD. C-index, category-free net reclassification index (cfNRI) and relative integrated discrimination improvement (IDI ) were used to quantify the predictive performance of genetic information beyond Framingham risk score variables. In contrast to GRS and PL , GRS significantly improved the prediction (delta C-index [95% confidence interval]: 0.0087 [0.0044, 0.0130]; IDI : 0.0509 [0.0131, 0.0894]; cfNRI improved only in cases: 0.1761 [0.0253, 0.3219]). GRS yielded slightly worse prediction results than GRS .
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/gepi.22389DOI Listing
September 2021

Roles of allostatic load, lifestyle and clinical risk factors in mediating the association between education and coronary heart disease risk in Europe.

J Epidemiol Community Health 2021 May 28. Epub 2021 May 28.

Centre for Public Health, Queen's University Belfast, Belfast, UK.

Background: Previous studies have shown that differential exposure to lifestyle factors may mediate the association between education and coronary heart diseases (CHD). However, few studies have examined the potential roles of allostatic load (AL) or differential susceptibility.

Methods: 25 310 men and 26 018 women aged 35-74 and CHD free at baseline were identified from 21 European cohorts and followed for a median of 10 years, to investigate the mediating role of AL, as well as of smoking, alcohol use and body mass index (BMI), on educational differences in CHD incidence, applying marginal structural models and three-way decomposition.

Results: AL is a mediator of the association between educational status and CHD incidence, with the highest proportion mediated observed among women and largely attributable to differential exposure, (28% (95% CI 19% to 44%)), with 8% (95% CI 0% to 16%) attributable to differential susceptibility. The mediating effects of smoking, alcohol and BMI, compared with AL, were relatively small for both men and women.

Conclusion: Overall, the educational inequalities in CHD incidence were partially mediated through differential exposure to AL. By contrast, the mediation of the educational gradient in CHD by investigated lifestyle risk factors was limited. As differential susceptibility in men was found to have a predominant role in the accumulation of AL in low educational classes, the investigation of AL-related risk factors is warranted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech-2020-215394DOI Listing
May 2021

Metabolic syndrome and the plasma proteome: from association to causation.

Cardiovasc Diabetol 2021 05 20;20(1):111. Epub 2021 May 20.

Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.

Background: The metabolic syndrome (MetS), defined by the simultaneous clustering of cardio-metabolic risk factors, is a significant worldwide public health burden with an estimated 25% prevalence worldwide. The pathogenesis of MetS is not entirely clear and the use of molecular level data could help uncover common pathogenic pathways behind the observed clustering.

Methods: Using a highly multiplexed aptamer-based affinity proteomics platform, we examined associations between plasma proteins and prevalent and incident MetS in the KORA cohort (n = 998) and replicated our results for prevalent MetS in the HUNT3 study (n = 923). We applied logistic regression models adjusted for age, sex, smoking status, and physical activity. We used the bootstrap ranking algorithm of least absolute shrinkage and selection operator (LASSO) to select a predictive model from the incident MetS associated proteins and used area under the curve (AUC) to assess its performance. Finally, we investigated the causal effect of the replicated proteins on MetS using two-sample Mendelian randomization.

Results: Prevalent MetS was associated with 116 proteins, of which 53 replicated in HUNT. These included previously reported proteins like leptin, and new proteins like NTR domain-containing protein 2 and endoplasmic reticulum protein 29. Incident MetS was associated with 14 proteins in KORA, of which 13 overlap the prevalent MetS associated proteins with soluble advanced glycosylation end product-specific receptor (sRAGE) being unique to incident MetS. The LASSO selected an eight-protein predictive model with an (AUC = 0.75; 95% CI = 0.71-0.79) in KORA. Mendelian randomization suggested causal effects of three proteins on MetS, namely apolipoprotein E2 (APOE2) (Wald-Ratio = - 0.12, Wald-p = 3.63e-13), apolipoprotein B (APOB) (Wald-Ratio = - 0.09, Wald-p = 2.54e-04) and proto-oncogene tyrosine-protein kinase receptor (RET) (Wald-Ratio = 0.10, Wald-p = 5.40e-04).

Conclusions: Our findings offer new insights into the plasma proteome underlying MetS and identify new protein associations. We reveal possible casual effects of APOE2, APOB and RET on MetS. Our results highlight protein candidates that could potentially serve as targets for prevention and therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12933-021-01299-2DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8138979PMC
May 2021

Mendelian randomisation identifies alternative splicing of the FAS death receptor as a mediator of severe COVID-19.

medRxiv 2021 Apr 7. Epub 2021 Apr 7.

Severe COVID-19 is characterised by immunopathology and epithelial injury. Proteomic studies have identified circulating proteins that are biomarkers of severe COVID-19, but cannot distinguish correlation from causation. To address this, we performed Mendelian randomisation (MR) to identify proteins that mediate severe COVID-19. Using protein quantitative trait loci (pQTL) data from the SCALLOP consortium, involving meta-analysis of up to 26,494 individuals, and COVID-19 genome-wide association data from the Host Genetics Initiative, we performed MR for 157 COVID-19 severity protein biomarkers. We identified significant MR results for five proteins: FAS, TNFRSF10A, CCL2, EPHB4 and LGALS9. Further evaluation of these candidates using sensitivity analyses and colocalization testing provided strong evidence to implicate the apoptosis-associated cytokine receptor FAS as a causal mediator of severe COVID-19. This effect was specific to severe disease. Using RNA-seq data from 4,778 individuals, we demonstrate that the pQTL at the locus results from genetically influenced alternate splicing causing skipping of exon 6. We show that the risk allele for very severe COVID-19 increases the proportion of transcripts lacking exon 6, and thereby increases soluble FAS. Soluble FAS acts as a decoy receptor for FAS-ligand, inhibiting apoptosis induced through membrane-bound FAS. In summary, we demonstrate a novel genetic mechanism that contributes to risk of severe of COVID-19, highlighting a pathway that may be a promising therapeutic target.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/2021.04.01.21254789DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8043484PMC
April 2021

Reversion from prediabetes to normoglycaemia after weight change in older persons: The KORA F4/FF4 study.

Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis 2021 02 12;31(2):429-438. Epub 2020 Sep 12.

German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD), München, Neuherberg, Germany; Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.

Background And Aims: In a non-interventional study of older persons, we assessed the impact of changes in BMI and waist circumference (WC) on reversion from glucose- and HbA1c-defined prediabetes to normoglycaemia (in short: reversion) and on persistence of normoglycaemia. Moreover, we studied whether reversion reduced cardiovascular risk.

Methods And Results: From the population-based KORA S4/F4/FF4 cohort study conducted in Southern Germany, we utilized data from the second and third visit to the study center (median follow-up 6.5 years). We used two overlapping data sets, one with 563 persons with HbA1c<6.5% (mean age 69 years, 51.5% men), one with 510 persons with glucose-based prediabetes or normal glucose tolerance. We calculated proportions of reversion, and estimated adjusted relative risks for the association between initial BMI/WC and change of BMI/WC, respectively, and reversion (and persistence of normoglycaemia, respectively). We estimated 10-year cardiovascular risks using the Framingham 2008 score. Overall, 27.3% of persons with HbA1c-defined prediabetes and 9.2% of persons with glucose-based prediabetes returned to normoglycaemia during follow-up. Lower initial BMI/WC and reduction of BMI/WC were associated with larger probabilities of returning to normoglycaemia (e.g., for HbA1c 5.7-6.4%, RR = 1.24 (95% CI: 1.09-1.41) per 1 kg/m decline of BMI). Moreover, reduction of BMI/WC increased probabilities of maintaining normoglycaemia (e.g., for glucose-based prediabetes, RR = 1.09 (1.02-1.16) per 1 kg/m decline of BMI). 10-year cardiovascular risk was 5.6 (1.7-9.6) percentage points lower after reversion from glucose-based prediabetes to normoglycaemia.

Conclusion: In older adults, even moderate weight reduction contributes to reversion from prediabetes to normoglycaemia and to maintaining normoglycaemia.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.numecd.2020.09.008DOI Listing
February 2021

Cross-sectional and prospective relationships of endogenous progestogens and estrogens with glucose metabolism in men and women: a KORA F4/FF4 Study.

BMJ Open Diabetes Res Care 2021 02;9(1)

Institute of of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, München-Neuherberg, Germany

Introduction: Relationships between endogenous female sex hormones and glycemic traits remain understudied, especially in men. We examined whether endogenous 17α-hydroxyprogesterone (17-OHP), progesterone, estradiol (E2), and free estradiol (fE2) were associated with glycemic traits and glycemic deterioration.

Research Design And Methods: 921 mainly middle-aged and elderly men and 390 perimenopausal/postmenopausal women from the German population-based Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) F4/FF4 cohort study were followed up for a median of 6.4 years. Sex hormones were measured at baseline using mass spectrometry. We calculated regression coefficients (β) and ORs with 95% CIs using multivariable-adjusted linear and logistic regression models for Z-standardized hormones and glycemic traits or glycemic deterioration (ie, worsening of categorized glucose tolerance status), respectively.

Results: In the cross-sectional analysis (n=1222 men and n=594 women), in men, 17-OHP was inversely associated with 2h-glucose (2hG) (β=-0.067, 95% CI -0.120 to -0.013) and fasting insulin (β=-0.074, 95% CI -0.118 to -0.030), and positively associated with Quantitative Insulin Sensitivity Check Index (QUICKI) (β=0.061, 95% CI 0.018 to 0.105). Progesterone was inversely associated with fasting insulin (β=-0.047, 95% CI -0.088 to -0.006) and positively associated with QUICKI (β=0.041, 95% CI 0.001 to 0.082). E2 was inversely associated with fasting insulin (β=-0.068, 95% CI -0.116 to -0.020) and positively associated with QUICKI (β=0.059, 95% CI 0.012 to 0.107). fE2 was positively associated with glycated hemoglobin (HbA) (β=0.079, 95% CI 0.027 to 0.132). In women, 17-OHP was positively associated with fasting glucose (FG) (β=0.068, 95% CI 0.014 to 0.123). fE2 was positively associated with FG (β=0.080, 95% CI 0.020 to 0.141) and HbA (β=0.121, 95% CI 0.062 to 0.180). In the sensitivity analyses restricted to postmenopausal women, we observed a positive association between 17-OHP and glycemic deterioration (OR=1.518, 95% CI 1.033 to 2.264).

Conclusions: Inter-relations exist between female sex hormones and glucose-related traits among perimenopausal/postmenopausal women and insulin-related traits among men. Endogenous progestogens and estrogens appear to be involved in glucose homeostasis not only in women but in men as well. Further well-powered studies assessing causal associations between endogenous female sex hormones and glycemic traits are warranted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjdrc-2020-001951DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7880095PMC
February 2021

Serum uromodulin and decline of kidney function in older participants of the population-based KORA F4/FF4 study.

Clin Kidney J 2021 Jan 1;14(1):205-211. Epub 2020 May 1.

Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik IV, Klinikum der Universität München, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Munich, Germany.

Background: Uromodulin, a tissue-specific tubular glycoprotein, has recently emerged as a promising biomarker for kidney function and tubular integrity. However, the association of serum uromodulin (sUmod) with renal function decline is still unknown in an older general population.

Methods: We analysed the association of sUmod with the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) and albuminuria in 1075 participants of the population-based Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) F4 study, ages 62-81 years, at baseline and prospectively after a mean follow-up time of 6.5 years ( = 605) using logistic and linear regression models as well as receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analyses.

Results: Cross-sectionally, sUmod was positively associated with eGFR (β = 0.31 ± 0.02 per higher standard deviation sUmod; P < 0.001) and inversely associated with the urinary albumin:creatinine ratio (β = -0.19 ± 0.04; P < 0.001) after adjustment for sex, age, body mass index, arterial hypertension, prediabetes and diabetes. After multivariable adjustment including baseline eGFR, sUmod was not associated with incident chronic kidney disease (CKD), defined as a decrease in eGFR <60 mL/min/1.73 m after 6.5 years of follow-up {odds ratio [OR] 1.02 [95% confidence interval (CI) 0.77-1.36] per higher SD sUmod} but was inversely associated with advanced CKD, defined as incident eGFR <45 mL/min/1.73 m [OR 0.64 (95% CI 0.42-0.98)]. The ROC showed no added predictive value of sUmod for kidney function decline in the fully adjusted model.

Conclusions: Higher sUmod was inversely associated with progression to advanced kidney disease but does not provide additional predictive value for the development of CKD in elderly participants of the population-based KORA study.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ckj/sfaa032DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7857794PMC
January 2021

Utility Decrements Associated With Diabetes and Related Complications: Estimates From a Population-Based Study in Germany.

Value Health 2021 02 11;24(2):274-280. Epub 2021 Jan 11.

Institute of Health Economics and Healthcare Management, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health (GmbH), Neuherberg, Germany; German Centre for Diabetes Research (DZD), Neuherberg, Germany.

Objectives: Health utility decrement estimates for diabetes and complications are needed for parametrization of simulation models that aim to assess the cost-utility of diabetes prevention and care strategies. This study estimates health utility decrements associated with diabetes and cardiovascular and microvascular complications from a population-based German study.

Methods: Data were obtained from the population based cross-sectional KORA (Cooperative Health Research in the Augsburg Region) health questionnaire 2016 and comprised n = 1072 individuals with type 2 diabetes and n = 7879 individuals without diabetes. Health utility was assessed through the EQ-5D-5L. We used linear regression models with interaction terms between type 2 diabetes and different cardiovascular and microvascular complications while adjusting for demographic and socio-economic factors and other comorbidities.

Results: Type 2 diabetes (β = -0.028, standard error [SE] = 0.014), stroke (β = -0.070, SE = 0.010), cardiac arrhythmia (β = -0.031, SE = 0.006), heart failure (β = -0.073, SE = 0.009), coronary heart disease (β = -0.028, SE = 0.010), myocardial infarction (β = -0.020, SE = 0.011, estimates of main effect), and neuropathy (β = -0.067, SE = 0.020), diabetic foot (β = -0.042, SE = 0.030), nephropathy (β = -0.032, SE = 0.025), and blindness (β = -0.094, SE = 0.056, estimates of interaction terms) were negatively associated with health utility. The interaction term for diabetes x stroke (β = -0.052, SE = 0.021) showed that the utility decrement for stroke is significantly larger in people with type 2 diabetes than in people without diabetes.

Conclusions: Diabetes, cardiovascular, and microvascular conditions are associated with significant health utility decrements. Utility decrements for some conditions differ between people with and without type 2 diabetes. These results are of high relevance for the parametrization of decision analytic simulation models and applied health economic evaluations in the field of prevention and management of type 2 diabetes in Germany.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jval.2020.09.017DOI Listing
February 2021

Relation of body fat mass and fat-free mass to total mortality: results from 7 prospective cohort studies.

Am J Clin Nutr 2021 03;113(3):639-646

Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, University of Regensburg, Regensburg, Germany.

Background: Fat mass and fat-free mass may play independent roles in mortality risk but available studies on body composition have yielded inconsistent results.

Objective: The aim was to determine the relations of body fat mass and fat-free mass to risk of mortality.

Methods: In pooled data from 7 prospective cohorts encompassing 16,155 individuals aged 20 to 93 y (median, 44 y), we used Cox regression and restricted cubic splines to estimate HRs and 95% CIs for the relation of body composition, measured by bioelectrical impedance analysis, to total mortality. We adjusted for age, study, sex, ethnicity, history of diabetes mellitus, education, smoking, physical activity, and alcohol consumption.

Results: During a median follow-up period of 14 y (range, 3-21 y), 1347 deaths were identified. After mutual adjustment for fat mass and fat-free mass, fat mass showed a J-shaped association with mortality (overall P value < 0.001; P for nonlinearity = 0.003). Using a fat mass index of 7.3 kg/m2 as the reference, a high fat mass index of 13.0 kg/m2 was associated with an HR of 1.56 (95% CI: 1.30, 1.87). In contrast, fat-free mass showed an inverse association with mortality (overall P value < 0.001; P for nonlinearity = 0.001). Compared with a low fat-free mass index of 16.1 kg/m2, a high fat-free mass of 21.9 kg/m2 was associated with an HR of 0.70 (95% CI: 0.56, 0.87).

Conclusions: Fat mass and fat-free mass show opposing associations with mortality. Excess fat mass is related to increased mortality risk, whereas fat-free mass protects against risk of mortality. These findings suggest that body composition provides important prognostic information on an individual's mortality risk not provided by traditional proxies of adiposity such as BMI.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/nqaa339DOI Listing
March 2021

Sex-dimorphic genetic effects and novel loci for fasting glucose and insulin variability.

Nat Commun 2021 01 5;12(1):24. Epub 2021 Jan 5.

Department of Biostatistics and Data Science, Division of Public Health Sciences, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC, USA.

Differences between sexes contribute to variation in the levels of fasting glucose and insulin. Epidemiological studies established a higher prevalence of impaired fasting glucose in men and impaired glucose tolerance in women, however, the genetic component underlying this phenomenon is not established. We assess sex-dimorphic (73,089/50,404 women and 67,506/47,806 men) and sex-combined (151,188/105,056 individuals) fasting glucose/fasting insulin genetic effects via genome-wide association study meta-analyses in individuals of European descent without diabetes. Here we report sex dimorphism in allelic effects on fasting insulin at IRS1 and ZNF12 loci, the latter showing higher RNA expression in whole blood in women compared to men. We also observe sex-homogeneous effects on fasting glucose at seven novel loci. Fasting insulin in women shows stronger genetic correlations than in men with waist-to-hip ratio and anorexia nervosa. Furthermore, waist-to-hip ratio is causally related to insulin resistance in women, but not in men. These results position dissection of metabolic and glycemic health sex dimorphism as a steppingstone for understanding differences in genetic effects between women and men in related phenotypes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-19366-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7785747PMC
January 2021

Association of antecedent cardiovascular risk factor levels and trajectories with cardiovascular magnetic resonance-derived cardiac function and structure.

J Cardiovasc Magn Reson 2021 01 4;23(1). Epub 2021 Jan 4.

Institute of Epidemiology, Kiel University, Kiel, Germany.

Background: The association of longitudinal trajectories of cardiovascular risk factors with cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR)-measures of cardiac structure and function in the community is not well known. Therefore we aimed to relate risk factor levels from different examination cycles to CMR-measures of the left ventricle (LV) and right ventricle in a population-based cohort.

Methods: We assessed conventional cardiovascular disease risk factors in 349 participants (143 women; aged 25-59 years) at three examination cycles (Exam 1 [baseline], at Exam 2 [7-years follow-up] and at Exam 3 [14-years follow-up]) of the KORA S4 cohort and related single-point measurements of individual risk factors and longitudinal trajectories of these risk factors to various CMR-measures obtained at Exam 3.

Results: High levels of diastolic blood pressure, waist circumference, and LDL-cholesterol at the individual exams were associated with worse cardiac function and structure. Trajectory clusters representing higher levels of the individual risk factors were associated with worse cardiac function and structure compared to low risk trajectory clusters of individual risk factors. Multivariable (combining different risk factors) trajectory clusters were associated with different cardiac parameters in a graded fashion (e.g. decrease of LV stroke volume for middle risk cluster β = - 4.91 ml/m, 95% CI - 7.89; - 1.94, p < 0.01 and high risk cluster β = - 7.00 ml/m, 95% CI - 10.73; - 3.28, p < 0.001 compared to the low risk cluster). The multivariable longitudinal trajectory clusters added significantly to explain variation in CMR traits beyond the multivariable risk profile obtained at Exam 3.

Conclusions: Cardiovascular disease risk factor levels, measured over a time period of 14 years, were associated with CMR-derived measures of cardiac structure and function. Longitudinal multivariable trajectory clusters explained a greater proportion of the inter-individual variation in cardiac traits than multiple risk factor assessed contemporaneous with the CMR exam.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12968-020-00698-wDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7780638PMC
January 2021

A Panel of 6 Biomarkers Significantly Improves the Prediction of Type 2 Diabetes in the MONICA/KORA Study Population.

J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2021 03;106(4):e1647-e1659

Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München-German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany.

Context: Improved strategies to identify persons at high risk of type 2 diabetes are important to target costly preventive efforts to those who will benefit most.

Objective: This work aimed to assess whether novel biomarkers improve the prediction of type 2 diabetes beyond noninvasive standard clinical risk factors alone or in combination with glycated hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c).

Methods: We used a population-based case-cohort study for discovery (689 incident cases and 1850 noncases) and an independent cohort study (262 incident cases, 2549 noncases) for validation. An L1-penalized (lasso) Cox model was used to select the most predictive set among 47 serum biomarkers from multiple etiological pathways. All variables available from the noninvasive German Diabetes Risk Score (GDRSadapted) were forced into the models. The C index and the category-free net reclassification index (cfNRI) were used to evaluate the predictive performance of the selected biomarkers beyond the GDRSadapted model (plus HbA1c).

Results: Interleukin-1 receptor antagonist, insulin-like growth factor binding protein 2, soluble E-selectin, decorin, adiponectin, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol were selected as the most relevant biomarkers. The simultaneous addition of these 6 biomarkers significantly improved the predictive performance both in the discovery (C index [95% CI], 0.053 [0.039-0.066]; cfNRI [95% CI], 67.4% [57.3%-79.5%]) and the validation study (0.034 [0.019-0.053]; 48.4% [35.6%-60.8%]). Significant improvements by these biomarkers were also seen on top of the GDRSadapted model plus HbA1c in both studies.

Conclusion: The addition of 6 biomarkers significantly improved the prediction of type 2 diabetes when added to a noninvasive clinical model or to a clinical model plus HbA1c.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgaa953DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7993565PMC
March 2021

Association of Long-Term Air Pollution with Prevalence and Incidence of Distal Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy: KORA F4/FF4 Study.

Environ Health Perspect 2020 12 23;128(12):127013. Epub 2020 Dec 23.

Institute for Clinical Diabetology, German Diabetes Center, Leibniz Center for Diabetes Research at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany.

Background: Air pollution contributes to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, but its relevance for other complications of diabetes, in particular distal sensorimotor polyneuropathy (DSPN), is unclear. Recent studies have indicated that DSPN is also increasingly prevalent in obesity.

Objectives: We aimed to assess associations of air pollutants with prevalent and incident DSPN in a population-based study of older individuals with high rates of type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Methods: Cross-sectional analyses on prevalent DSPN were based on 1,075 individuals 62-81 years of age from the German Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) F4 survey (2006-2008). Analyses on incident DSPN included 424 individuals without DSPN at baseline (KORA F4), of whom 188 had developed DSPN by the KORA FF4 survey (2013-2014). Associations of annual average air pollutant concentrations at participants' residences with prevalent and incident DSPN were estimated using Poisson regression models with a robust error variance adjusting for multiple confounders.

Results: Higher particle number concentrations (PNCs) were associated with higher prevalence [risk ratio (RR) per interquartile range (IQR) (95% CI: 1.01, 1.20)] and incidence [1.11 (95% CI: 0.99, 1.24)] of DSPN. In subgroup analyses, particulate (PNC, , , , and ) and gaseous (, ) pollutants were positively associated with prevalent DSPN in obese participants, whereas corresponding estimates for nonobese participants were close to the null [e.g., for an IQR increase in PNC, (95% CI: 1.05, 1.31) vs. 1.06 (95% CI: 0.95, 1.19); ]. With the exception of , corresponding associations with incident DSPN were positive in obese participants but null or inverse for nonobese participants, with [e.g., for PNC, (95% CI: 1.08, 1.51) vs. 1.03 (95% CI: 0.90, 1.18); ].

Discussion: Both particulate and gaseous air pollutants were positively associated with prevalent and incident DSPN in obese individuals. Obesity and air pollution may have synergistic effects on the development of DSPN. https://doi.org/10.1289/EHP7311.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1289/EHP7311DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7757787PMC
December 2020

Living longer but less healthy: The female disadvantage in health expectancy. Results from the KORA-Age study.

Exp Gerontol 2021 03 10;145:111196. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Institute for Medical Information Processing, Biometry and Epidemiology, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Munich, Germany; Munich Center of Health Sciences, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, Munich, Germany; German Center for Vertigo and Balance Disorders, Klinikum der Universität München, Munich, Germany.

Objectives: We explored the male-female health-survival paradox in the context of health expectancy (HE) at age 65 and thereafter, using three different morbidity measures and different severity cut-offs with and without adjustments for the share of nursing home residents.

Methods: HE at ages 65, 70, 75, 80, and 85 was estimated with the Sullivan method, linking morbidity prevalence from the KORA (Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg)-Age study to 2016 Bavarian mortality data. Morbidity measures comprised deficit accumulation (Frailty Index, FI, cut-offs 0.08 and 0.25), disability (Health Assessment Questionnaire-Disability Index, HAQ-DI, cut-off >0) and participation (Global Activity Limitation Indicator, GALI, "limited" vs "not limited").

Results: Morbidity data were available for 4083 participants (52.7% female). HE was lower in women than in men at all ages. Differences in morbidity prevalence, absolute HE, and health proportions of life expectancy (relative HE) increased with age for FI ≥ 0.25 and GALI, but not for HAQ-DI > 0 and FI > 0.08. Accounting for the share of nursing home residents resulted in a slight reduction of HE estimates but had no impact on estimated sex differences.

Conclusions: In HE at age 65 and thereafter, women's health disadvantage was larger than their life expectancy advantage over men.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.exger.2020.111196DOI Listing
March 2021

Multiplatform Approach for Plasma Proteomics: Complementarity of Olink Proximity Extension Assay Technology to Mass Spectrometry-Based Protein Profiling.

J Proteome Res 2021 01 30;20(1):751-762. Epub 2020 Nov 30.

Research Unit Protein Science and Core Facility Proteomics, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health (GmbH), Neuherberg 85764, Germany.

The plasma proteome is the ultimate target for biomarker discovery. It stores an endless amount of information on the pathophysiological status of a living organism, which is, however, still difficult to comprehensively access. The high complexity of the plasma proteome can be addressed by either a system-wide and unbiased tool such as mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) or a highly sensitive targeted immunoassay such as the proximity extension assay (PEA). To address relevant differences and important shared characteristics, we tested the performance of LC-MS/MS in the data-dependent and data-independent acquisition modes and Olink PEA to measure circulating plasma proteins in 173 human plasma samples from a Southern German population-based cohort. We demonstrated the measurement of more than 300 proteins with both LC-MS/MS approaches applied, mainly including high-abundance plasma proteins. By the use of the PEA technology, we measured 728 plasma proteins, covering a broad dynamic range with high sensitivity down to pg/mL concentrations. Then, we quantified 35 overlapping proteins with all three analytical platforms, verifying the reproducibility of data distributions, measurement correlation, and gender-based differential expression. Our work highlights the limitations and the advantages of both targeted and untargeted approaches and proves their complementary strengths. We demonstrated a significant gain in proteome coverage depth and subsequent biological insight by a combination of platforms-a promising approach for future biomarker and mechanistic studies.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1021/acs.jproteome.0c00641DOI Listing
January 2021

Contribution of cystatin C- and creatinine-based definitions of chronic kidney disease to cardiovascular risk assessment in 20 population-based and 3 disease cohorts: the BiomarCaRE project.

BMC Med 2020 11 9;18(1):300. Epub 2020 Nov 9.

Institute of Epidemiology and Medical Biometry, Ulm University, Helmholtzstr. 22, 89081, Ulm, Germany.

Background: Chronic kidney disease has emerged as a strong cardiovascular risk factor, and in many current guidelines, it is already considered as a coronary heart disease (CHD) equivalent. Routinely, creatinine has been used as the main marker of renal function, but recently, cystatin C emerged as a more promising marker. The aim of this study was to assess the comparative cardiovascular and mortality risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) using cystatin C-based and creatinine-based equations of the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) in participants of population-based and disease cohorts.

Methods: The present study has been conducted within the BiomarCaRE project, with harmonized data from 20 population-based cohorts (n = 76,954) from 6 European countries and 3 cardiovascular disease (CVD) cohorts (n = 4982) from Germany. Cox proportional hazards models were used to assess hazard ratios (HRs) for the various CKD definitions with adverse outcomes and mortality after adjustment for the Systematic COronary Risk Evaluation (SCORE) variables and study center. Main outcome measures were cardiovascular diseases, cardiovascular death, and all-cause mortality.

Results: The overall prevalence of CKD stage 3-5 by creatinine- and cystatin C-based eGFR, respectively, was 3.3% and 7.4% in the population-based cohorts and 13.9% and 14.4% in the disease cohorts. CKD was an important independent risk factor for subsequent CVD events and mortality. For example, in the population-based cohorts, the HR for CVD mortality was 1.72 (95% CI 1.53 to 1.92) with creatinine-based CKD and it was 2.14 (95% CI 1.90 to 2.40) based on cystatin-based CKD compared to participants without CKD. In general, the HRs were higher for cystatin C-based CKD compared to creatinine-based CKD, for all three outcomes and risk increased clearly below the conventional threshold for CKD, also in older adults. Net reclassification indices were larger for a cystatin-C based CKD definition. Differences in HRs (between the two CKD measures) in the disease cohorts were less pronounced than in the population-based cohorts.

Conclusion: CKD is an important risk factor for subsequent CVD events and total mortality. However, point estimates of creatinine- and cystatin C-based CKD differed considerably between low- and high-risk populations. Especially in low-risk settings, the use of cystatin C-based CKD may result in more accurate risk estimates and have better prognostic value.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12916-020-01776-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7650190PMC
November 2020

Association of Circulating Monocyte Chemoattractant Protein-1 Levels With Cardiovascular Mortality: A Meta-analysis of Population-Based Studies.

JAMA Cardiol 2021 May;6(5):587-592

Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research, University Hospital, Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Germany.

Importance: Human genetics and studies in experimental models support a key role of monocyte-chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) in atherosclerosis. Yet, the associations of circulating MCP-1 levels with risk of coronary heart disease and cardiovascular death in the general population remain largely unexplored.

Objective: To explore whether circulating levels of MCP-1 are associated with risk of incident coronary heart disease, myocardial infarction, and cardiovascular mortality in the general population.

Data Sources And Selection: Population-based cohort studies, identified through a systematic review, that have examined associations of circulating MCP-1 levels with cardiovascular end points.

Data Extraction And Synthesis: Using a prespecified harmonized analysis plan, study-specific summary data were obtained from Cox regression models after excluding individuals with overt cardiovascular disease at baseline. Derived hazard ratios (HRs) were synthesized using random-effects meta-analyses.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Incident coronary heart disease (myocardial infarction, coronary revascularization, and unstable angina), nonfatal myocardial infarction, and cardiovascular death (from cardiac or cerebrovascular causes).

Results: The meta-analysis included 7 cohort studies involving 21 401 individuals (mean [SD] age, 53.7 [10.2] years; 10 012 men [46.8%]). Mean (SD) follow-up was 15.3 (4.5) years (326 392 person-years at risk). In models adjusting for age, sex, and race/ethnicity, higher MCP-1 levels at baseline were associated with increased risk of coronary heart disease (HR per 1-SD increment in MCP-1 levels: 1.06 [95% CI, 1.01-1.11]; P = .01), nonfatal myocardial infarction (HR, 1.07 [95% CI, 1.01-1.13]; P = .02), and cardiovascular death (HR, 1.12 [95% CI, 1.05-1.20]; P < .001). In analyses comparing MCP-1 quartiles, these associations followed dose-response patterns. After additionally adjusting for vascular risk factors, the risk estimates were attenuated, but the associations of MCP-1 levels with cardiovascular death remained statistically significant, as did the association of MCP-1 levels in the upper quartile with coronary heart disease. There was no significant heterogeneity; the results did not change in sensitivity analyses excluding events occurring in the first 5 years after MCP-1 measurement, and the risk estimates were stable after additional adjustments for circulating levels of interleukin-6 and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein.

Conclusions And Relevance: Higher circulating MCP-1 levels are associated with higher long-term cardiovascular mortality in community-dwelling individuals free of overt cardiovascular disease. These findings provide further support for a key role of MCP-1-signaling in cardiovascular disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1001/jamacardio.2020.5392DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8111478PMC
May 2021

Association between dietary patterns and prediabetes, undetected diabetes or clinically diagnosed diabetes: results from the KORA FF4 study.

Eur J Nutr 2021 Aug 30;60(5):2331-2341. Epub 2020 Oct 30.

Independent Research Group Clinical Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, (GmbH), Ingolstädter Landstr. 1, 85764, Neuherberg, Germany.

Purpose: Diet is one of the most important modifiable risk factors for the development of type 2 diabetes. Here, we aim to identify dietary patterns and to investigate their association with prediabetes, undetected diabetes and prevalent diabetes.

Methods: The present study included 1305 participants of the cross-sectional population-based KORA FF4 study. Oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) measurements together with a physician-confirmed diagnosis allowed for an accurate categorization of the participants according to their glucose tolerance status into normal glucose tolerance (n = 698), prediabetes (n = 459), undetected diabetes (n = 49), and prevalent diabetes (n = 99). Dietary patterns were identified through principal component analysis followed by hierarchical clustering. The association between dietary patterns and glucose tolerance status was investigated using multinomial logistic regression models.

Results: A Prudent pattern, characterized by high consumption of vegetables, fruits, wholegrains and dairy products, and a Western pattern, characterized by high consumption of red and processed meat, alcoholic beverages, refined grains and sugar-sweetened beverages, were identified. Participants following the Western pattern had significantly higher chances of having prediabetes (odds ratio [OR] 1.92; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.35, 2.73), undetected diabetes (OR 10.12; 95% CI 4.19, 24.43) or prevalent diabetes (OR 3.51; 95% CI 1.85, 6.67), compared to participants following the Prudent pattern.

Conclusion: To our knowledge, the present study is one of the few investigating the association between dietary patterns and prediabetes or undetected diabetes. The use of a reference group exclusively including participants with normal glucose tolerance might explain the strong associations observed in our study. These results suggest a very important role of dietary habits in the prevention of prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00394-020-02416-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8275503PMC
August 2021

Associations of cardiac stress biomarkers with incident type 2 diabetes and changes in glucose metabolism: KORA F4/FF4 study.

Cardiovasc Diabetol 2020 10 16;19(1):178. Epub 2020 Oct 16.

Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik IV, Klinikum der Universität München, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, Munich, Germany.

Background: High N-terminal pro-brain-type natriuretic peptide levels have been associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D). However, less is known about other cardiac stress biomarkers in this context. Here we evaluated the association of mid-regional pro-atrial natriuretic peptide (MR-proANP), C-terminal pro-arginine vasopressin (copeptin), C-terminal pro-endothelin-1 (CT-proET-1) and mid-regional pro-adrenomedullin (MR-proADM) with incident T2D and changes in glucose metabolism.

Methods: We performed a prospective cohort study using data from the population-based KORA F4/FF4 study. 1773 participants (52.3% women) with MR-proANP measurements and 960 (52.7% women) with copeptin, CT-proET-1 and MR-proADM measurements were included. We examined associations of circulating plasma levels of MR-proANP, copeptin, CT-proET-1 and MR-proADM with incident T2D, the combined endpoint of incident prediabetes/T2D and with fasting and 2 h-glucose, fasting insulin, HOMA-IR, HOMA-B and HbA1c at follow-up. Logistic and linear regression models adjusted for age, sex, waist circumference, height, hypertension, total/HDL cholesterol ratio, triglycerides, smoking, physical activity and parental history of diabetes were used to compute effect estimates.

Results: During a median follow-up time of 6.4 years (25th and 75th percentiles: 6.0 and 6.6, respectively), 119 out of the 1773 participants and 72 out of the 960 participants developed T2D. MR-proANP was inversely associated with incident T2D (odds ratio [95% confidence interval]: 0.75 [0.58; 0.96] per 1-SD increase of log MR-proANP). Copeptin was positively associated with incident prediabetes/T2D (1.29 [1.02; 1.63] per 1-SD increase of log copeptin). Elevated levels of CT-proET-1 were associated with increased HOMA-B at follow-up, while elevated MR-proADM levels were associated with increased fasting insulin, HOMA-IR and HOMA-B at follow-up. These associations were independent of previously described diabetes risk factors.

Conclusions: High plasma concentrations of MR-proANP contributed to a lower risk of incident T2D, whereas high plasma concentrations of copeptin were associated with an increased risk of incident prediabetes/T2D. Furthermore, high plasma concentrations of CT-proET-1 and MR-proADM were associated with increased insulin resistance. Our study provides evidence that biomarkers implicated in cardiac stress are associated with incident T2D and changes in glucose metabolism.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12933-020-01117-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7566143PMC
October 2020

Deciphering the Plasma Proteome of Type 2 Diabetes.

Diabetes 2020 12 14;69(12):2766-2778. Epub 2020 Sep 14.

Research Unit of Molecular Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Neuherberg, Germany

With an estimated prevalence of 463 million affected, type 2 diabetes represents a major challenge to health care systems worldwide. Analyzing the plasma proteomes of individuals with type 2 diabetes may illuminate hitherto unknown functional mechanisms underlying disease pathology. We assessed the associations between type 2 diabetes and >1,000 plasma proteins in the Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) F4 cohort ( = 993, 110 cases), with subsequent replication in the third wave of the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT3) cohort ( = 940, 149 cases). We computed logistic regression models adjusted for age, sex, BMI, smoking status, and hypertension. Additionally, we investigated associations with incident type 2 diabetes and performed two-sample bidirectional Mendelian randomization (MR) analysis to prioritize our results. Association analysis of prevalent type 2 diabetes revealed 24 replicated proteins, of which 8 are novel. Proteins showing association with incident type 2 diabetes were aminoacylase-1, growth hormone receptor, and insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 2. Aminoacylase-1 was associated with both prevalent and incident type 2 diabetes. MR analysis yielded nominally significant causal effects of type 2 diabetes on cathepsin Z and rennin, both known to have roles in the pathophysiological pathways of cardiovascular disease, and of sex hormone-binding globulin on type 2 diabetes. In conclusion, our high-throughput proteomics study replicated previously reported type 2 diabetes-protein associations and identified new candidate proteins possibly involved in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2337/db20-0296DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7679779PMC
December 2020

Decomposing the educational gradient in allostatic load across European populations. What matters the most: differentials in exposure or in susceptibility?

J Epidemiol Community Health 2020 12 27;74(12):1008-1015. Epub 2020 Aug 27.

Centro Ricerche in Epidemiologia e Medicina Preventiva, Università Degli Studi dell'Insubria, Varese, Italy

Background: We investigate whether socially disadvantaged individuals are more susceptible to the detrimental effects of smoking and alcohol intake on allostatic load (AL), a marker of physiological 'wear and tear', resulting from adaptation to chronic stress.

Methods: In a cross-sectional analysis, 27 019 men and 26 738 women aged 35-74 years were identified from 21 European cohorts in the BiomarCaRE consortium. We defined three educational classes (EDs) according to years of schooling and an AL score as the sum of z-scores of eight selected biomarkers from the cardiovascular, metabolic and inflammatory systems. We used the Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition to disentangle the ED gradient in AL score into the (DE, attributable to different distribution of smoking and alcohol intake across EDs) and the (DS, attributable to a different effect of risk factors on AL across EDs) components.

Results: Less-educated men (mean AL difference: 0.68, 95% CI 0.57 to 0.79) and women (1.52, 95% CI 1.40 to 1.64) had higher AL scores. DE accounted for 7% and 6% of the gradient in men and women, respectively. In men, combining smoking and alcohol intake, DS accounted for 42% of the gradient (smoking DS coefficient=0.177, 26% of the gradient; alcohol DS coefficient=0.109; 16%, not statistically significant). DS contribution increased to 69% in metabolic markers. DS estimates were consistent across age groups, irrespective of comorbidities and robust to unmeasured confounding. No DS was observed in women.

Conclusions: In men, a DS mechanism substantially contributes to the educational class gradient in allostatic load.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/jech-2020-213946DOI Listing
December 2020

Investigation of a nonsense mutation located in the complex KIV-2 copy number variation region of apolipoprotein(a) in 10,910 individuals.

Genome Med 2020 08 21;12(1):74. Epub 2020 Aug 21.

Institute of Genetic Epidemiology, Department of Genetics and Pharmacology, Medical University of Innsbruck, Schöpfstrasse 41, A-6020, Innsbruck, Austria.

Background: The concentrations of the highly atherogenic lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] are mainly genetically determined by the LPA gene locus. However, up to 70% of the coding sequence is located in the complex so-called kringle IV type 2 (KIV-2) copy number variation, a region hardly accessible by common genotyping and sequencing technologies. Despite its size, little is known about genetic variants in this complex region. The R21X variant is a functional variant located in this region, but it has never been analyzed in large cohorts.

Methods: We typed R21X in 10,910 individuals from three European populations using a newly developed high-throughput allele-specific qPCR assay. R21X allelic location was determined by separating the LPA alleles using pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and typing them separately. Using GWAS data, we identified a proxy SNP located outside of the KIV-2. Linkage disequilibrium was determined both statistically and by long-range haplotyping using PFGE. Worldwide frequencies were determined by reanalyzing the sequencing data of the 1000 Genomes Project with a dedicated pipeline.

Results: R21X carriers (frequency 0.016-0.021) showed significantly lower mean Lp(a) concentrations (- 11.7 mg/dL [- 15.5; - 7.82], p = 3.39e-32). The variant is located mostly on medium-sized LPA alleles. In the 1000 Genome data, R21X mostly occurs in Europeans and South Asians, is absent in Africans, and shows varying frequencies in South American populations (0 to 0.022). Of note, the best proxy SNP was another LPA null mutation (rs41272114, D' = 0.958, R = 0.281). D' was very high in all 1000G populations (0.986-0.996), although rs41272114 frequency varies considerably (0-0.182). Co-localization of both null mutations on the same allele was confirmed by PFGE-based long-range haplotyping.

Conclusions: We performed the largest epidemiological study on an LPA KIV-2 variant so far, showing that it is possible to assess LPA KIV-2 mutations on a large scale. Surprisingly, in all analyzed populations, R21X was located on the same haplotype as the splice mutation rs41272114, creating "double-null" LPA alleles. Despite being a nonsense variant, the R21X status does not provide additional information beyond the rs41272114 genotype. This has important implications for studies using LPA loss-of-function mutations as genetic instruments and emphasizes the complexity of LPA genetics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13073-020-00771-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7442989PMC
August 2020

Serum uromodulin is inversely associated with arterial hypertension and the vasoconstrictive prohormone CT-proET-1 in the population-based KORA F4 study.

PLoS One 2020 7;15(8):e0237364. Epub 2020 Aug 7.

Medizinische Klinik und Poliklinik IV, Klinikum der Universität München, LMU München, Munich, Germany.

Objectives: Uromodulin has been associated with arterial hypertension in genome-wide association studies, but data from clinical and preclinical studies are inconsistent. We here analyzed the association of serum uromodulin (sUmod) with arterial hypertension and vasoactive hormones in a population-based study.

Methods: In 1108 participants of the KORA F4 study aged 62-81 years, sUmod was measured and the association of sUmod with arterial hypertension was assessed using logistic regression models. The associations of sUmod with renin and aldosterone and with the vasoconstrictive prohormone C-terminal pro-endothelin-1 (CT-proET-1) were analyzed in 1079 participants and in 618 participants, respectively, using linear regression models.

Results: After multivariable adjustment including sex, age, eGFR, BMI, fasting glucose, current smoking, previous stroke and myocardial infarction, sUmod was inversely associated with arterial hypertension (OR 0.78; 95% CI 0.68-0.91; p = 0.001). SUmod was not significantly associated with renin and aldosterone after adjustment for sex, age and eGFR. However, sUmod was inversely associated with CT-proET-1 (β -0.19 ± 0.04; p < 0.001) after adjustment for sex, age, eGFR, BMI, arterial hypertension, fasting glucose, current smoking, previous stroke and myocardial infarction. The association with CT-proET-1 was stronger in participants with hypertension (β -0.22 ± 0.04) than in normotensive participants (β -0.13 ± 0.06; p for interaction hypertension = 0.003 in the model adjusted for hypertension).

Conclusions: SUmod was inversely associated with arterial hypertension and the vasoconstrictive prohormone CT-proET-1, suggesting direct or indirect effects of sUmod on blood pressure regulation.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0237364PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7413541PMC
October 2020

Toward targeted prevention: risk factors for prediabetes defined by impaired fasting glucose, impaired glucose tolerance and increased HbA1c in the population-based KORA study from Germany.

Acta Diabetol 2020 Dec 3;57(12):1481-1491. Epub 2020 Aug 3.

Institute of Health Economics and Health Care Management, Helmholtz Zentrum München GmbH, German Research Center for Environmental Health, Ingolstädter Landstraße 1, 85764, Neuherberg, Germany.

Aims: To identify socioeconomic, behavioral and clinical factors that are associated with prediabetes according to different prediabetes definition criteria.

Methods: Analyses use pooled data of the population-based Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg (KORA) studies (n = 5312 observations aged ≥ 38 years without diabetes). Prediabetes was defined through either impaired fasting glucose (IFG), impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) or elevated HbA1c according to thresholds of the American Diabetes Association. Explanatory variables were regressed on prediabetes using generalized estimating equations.

Results: Mean age was 58.4 years; 50% had prediabetes (33% had IFG, 16% IGT, and 26% elevated HbA1c, 10% fulfilled all three criteria). Age, obesity, hypertension, low education, unemployment, statutory health insurance, urban residence and physical inactivity were associated with prediabetes. Male sex was a stronger risk factor for IFG (OR = 2.5; 95%-CI: 2.2-2.9) than for IGT or elevated HbA1c, and being unemployed was a stronger risk factor for IGT (OR = 3.2 95%-CI: 2.6-4.0) than for IFG or elevated HbA1c.

Conclusions: The overlap of people with IFG, IGT and elevated HbA1c is small, and some factors are associated with only one criterion. Knowledge on sociodemographic and socioeconomic risk factors can be used to effectively target interventions to people at high risk for type 2 diabetes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00592-020-01573-xDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7591423PMC
December 2020
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