Adipose tissue infiltration in skeletal muscle: age patterns and association with diabetes among men of African ancestry Journal Articles uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: Although obesity is strongly associated with diabetes, the greater prevalence of diabetes in persons of African ancestry than in those of other ancestries cannot be explained simply by differences in total or central adiposity. OBJECTIVE: We examined whether skeletal muscle composition is associated with diabetes in 1249 men of African ancestry aged >or=40 y. DESIGN: Anthropometry and fasting serum glucose were measured, and lower-leg skeletal muscle composition was assessed with peripheral quantitative computerized tomography (pQCT). RESULTS: The prevalence of diabetes in this population was high (21%). We observed an age-associated adipose tissue remodeling in skeletal muscle and greater intermuscular (IMAT) and lesser subcutaneous (SAT) adipose tissue area with advancing age (P < 0.0001). Multivariate stepwise logistic regression identified more IMAT and less SAT to be significantly associated with a greater prevalence of diabetes. Even among normal-weight men [body mass index (BMI; in kg/m(2)) < 25], diabetic men had significantly (P = 0.01) more IMAT than did those without diabetes. Greater IMAT was also associated with a greater prevalence of hyperglycemia in men with a family history of diabetes than in those without such history (P for interaction = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: These findings underscore the independent associations of subcutaneous and intermuscular fat among men of African ancestry, an effect that may be modified by a family history of diabetes. Further studies are needed to identify the genetic and physiologic mechanisms that influence the distribution and remodeling of adipose tissue in skeletal muscle with aging.'


  • Miljkovic-Gacic, Iva
  • Gordon, Christopher
  • Goodpaster, Bret H
  • Bunker, Clareann H
  • Patrick, Alan L
  • Kuller, Lewis H
  • Wheeler, Victor W
  • Evans, Rhobert W
  • Zmuda, Joseph M

publication date

  • June 2008