Purpose Elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) has been strongly related to obesity, diabetes (DM), and insulin resistance (IR) in predominantly white non-Hispanic cohorts. There is limited information on systemic inflammation in African Americans.
Methods The study cohort consisted of 5,202 participants (55 ± 13 years, 64% female) who presented for Jackson Heart Study Exam 1 (2001-2004). The contribution of traditional risk factors to the variability of CRP was tested using a stepwise regression model. We evaluated the relation of obesity, DM and IR to CRP among participants using analysis of variance.
Results In the stepwise regression, the amount of variability in CRP explained by clinical covariates was 23%. BMI explained 57% of the variability of CRP due to traditional risk factors. The mean CRP for participants was 1.4 mg/L for those nonobese without IR, 3.2 mg/L for those obese without IR, 2.2 mg/L for those nonobese with IR, 4.0 mg/L for those obese with IR, 1.9 mg/L for those nonobese with DM, and 4.1 mg/L for those obese with DM. CRP was significantly higher for obese participants compared with nonobese participants regardless of IR or DM status (p < .0001). For both obese and nonobese participants, CRP was significantly higher in nondiabetics with IR compared with nondiabetics without IR (p < .0001). CRP was significantly higher in diabetics compared with nondiabetics without IR (p < .0001).
Conclusions In this large population-based cohort of African Americans, we found that among traditional risk factors, BMI contributed the greatest to the variability of CRP. DM and IR were also significantly related to CRP.
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