A comparison of associations of body mass index and dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry measured percentage fat and total fat with global serum metabolites in young women

Joanne F. Dorgan, Alice S. Ryan, Erin S. LeBlanc, Linda Van Horn, Laurence S. Magder, Linda G. Snetselaar, Yuji Zhang, Cher M. Dallal, Seungyoun Jung, John A. Shepherd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: Body mass index (BMI) does not directly measure adiposity, whereas dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) provides valid direct estimates of adiposity. Therefore, this study evaluated usefulness of BMI as a measure of adiposity in serum metabolomics studies. Methods: A cross-sectional analysis was conducted of 202 women aged 25 to 29 years in the Dietary Intervention Study in Children Follow-Up Study. Heights and weights were measured, and body composition was quantified using clinical DXA protocols. Serum metabolomic profiling was performed by liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry. Partial correlations of BMI, percentage fat (%FAT), and total fat (TOTFAT) with log transformed serum metabolites were calculated. Results: There was significant overlap in the 93 metabolites that correlated with BMI, %FAT, and/or TOTFAT; 9 differently correlated with BMI and %FAT, whereas 15 differently correlated with BMI and TOTFAT. Even for these metabolites, absolute differences were modest. Metabolite set enrichment analysis identified diacylglycerol and sphingolipid metabolism as overrepresented among metabolites significantly correlated with all three measures of adiposity. Conclusions: BMI can be a good proxy for DXA measured %FAT and TOTFAT in descriptive metabolomic studies of healthy, young White women. Larger studies in more diverse populations are needed to endorse more generalized conclusions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)525-536
Number of pages12
JournalObesity
Volume31
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the NIH (R01CA214783, R01CA104670, P30CA134274), the Department of Veterans Affairs (IK6 RX003977), and the Maryland Department of Health's Cigarette Restitution Fund Program. The sponsors had no role in the study design, analysis, collection and interpretation of the data, the preparation of the manuscript, or the decision to submit the manuscript for publication.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Obesity Society.

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