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International Journal of Endocrinology
Volume 2016, Article ID 8173905, 10 pages
Research Article

Relationship between Branched-Chain Amino Acids, Metabolic Syndrome, and Cardiovascular Risk Profile in a Chinese Population: A Cross-Sectional Study

1Department of Endocrinology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China
2Department of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Huai’an Hospital Affiliated to Xuzhou Medical University and Huai’an Second People’s Hospital, Huai’an 223001, China
3Research Division of Clinical Pharmacology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China
4School of Public Health, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China

Received 4 March 2016; Accepted 28 June 2016

Academic Editor: Darío A. Castroviejo

Copyright © 2016 Wen Hu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. This study aimed to evaluate the relationship between branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs), metabolic syndrome (MS), and other cardiovascular (CV) risk factors in middle-aged and elderly Chinese population at high risk for the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Methods. 1302 subjects were enrolled from the Huai’an Diabetes Prevention Program. Results. BCAAs levels were positively correlated with MS, its components, and CV risk profile. The odds ratio (OR) for MS among subjects in the fourth quartile of BCAAs levels showed a 2.17-fold increase compared with those in the first quartile. BCAAs were independently associated with high Framingham risk score even after adjusting for MS and its components (). Additionally, the OR for high CV risk was 3.20-fold () in participants in the fourth BCAAs quartile with MS compared with participants in the first BCAAs quartile without MS. Conclusions. Increased BCAAs levels are independent risk factors of MS and CVD in addition to the traditional factors in middle-aged and elderly Chinese population. The development of CVD in MS patients with high level BCAAs is accelerated. Intervention studies are needed to investigate whether the strategy of BCAAs reduction has impacts on endpoints in patients with higher CV risk. This study is registered with ChiCTR-TRC-14005029.