Omental Adipocyte Hypertrophy Tied to Lipid Profile

More visceral adipocytes or enlargement of omental adipocytes raise hypertriglyceridemia risk

WEDNESDAY, June 1 (HealthDay News) -- In women, omental, but not subcutaneous, adipocyte hypertrophy is correlated with an altered lipid profile, including hypertriglyceridemia, according to a study published in the May issue of Diabetes.

Alain Veilleux, M.D., from the Laval University Medical Research Center in Québec City, and colleagues evaluated whether subcutaneous and omental adipocyte hypertrophy were related to metabolic alterations independent of body composition and fat distribution in 150 lean to obese women. Mean adipocyte diameter was obtained in paired subcutaneous and omental adipose tissue samples. Adipocyte size in both adipose tissue depots were computed using body composition and fat distribution measures. Women with larger or smaller adipocytes than predicted were considered as having adipocyte hypertrophy or hyperplasia, respectively.

The investigators found that, compared to women with omental adipocyte hyperplasia, those with omental adipocyte hypertrophy had significantly increased plasma and very-low-density lipoprotein triglyceride levels, and they had a significantly increased total-to-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratio. The lipid profile of women with subcutaneous adipocyte hypertrophy was similar to women with subcutaneous adipocyte hyperplasia. The risk of hypertriglyceridemia was increased (adjusted odds ratio [OR], 4.06) with a 10 percent enlargement of omental adipocytes, independent of body composition and fat distribution measures, and with a 10 percent increase in the number of visceral adipocytes (adjusted OR, 1.55). No significant associations were found between adipocyte size and homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance after adjusting for adiposity and body fat distribution.

"Our results support the hypothesis that omental adipose tissue cellularity is an important predictor of hypertriglyceridemia in women," the authors write.

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