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International Journal of Hepatology
Volume 2017, Article ID 8435178, 7 pages
Research Article

Shorter Leukocyte Telomere Length in Relation to Presumed Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease in Mexican-American Men in NHANES 1999–2002

1Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA
2Department of Medicine, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA
3Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco, CA, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Janet M. Wojcicki; moc.liamg@ikcicjow

Received 7 March 2017; Revised 12 May 2017; Accepted 22 May 2017; Published 27 June 2017

Academic Editor: Brijesh K. Singh

Copyright © 2017 Janet M. Wojcicki 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.


Leukocyte telomere length is shorter in response to chronic disease processes associated with inflammation such as diabetes mellitus and coronary artery disease. Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from 1999 to 2002 was used to explore the relationship between leukocyte telomere length and presumed NAFLD, as indicated by elevated serum alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels, obesity, or abdominal obesity. Logistic regression models were used to evaluate the relationship between telomere length and presumed markers of NAFLD adjusting for possible confounders. There was no relationship between elevated ALT levels, abdominal obesity, or obesity and telomere length in adjusted models in NHANES (OR 1.13, 95% CI 0.48–2.65; OR 1.17, 95% CI 0.52–2.62, resp.). Mexican-American men had shorter telomere length in relation to presumed NAFLD (OR 0.07, 95% CI 0.006–0.79) and using different indicators of NAFLD (OR 0.012, 95% CI 0.0006–0.24). Mexican origin with presumed NAFLD had shorter telomere length than men in other population groups. Longitudinal studies are necessary to evaluate the role of telomere length as a potential predictor to assess pathogenesis of NALFD in Mexicans.