Retinol-Binding Protein 4 Is an Independent Factor Associated With Triglycerides and a Determinant of Very Low-Density Lipoprotein–Apolipoprotein B100 Catabolism in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
Objective—Retinol-binding protein 4 (rbp4) is an adipokine secreted by adipocytes and liver, whose levels are elevated in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). Plasma levels of rbp4 and triglycerides are strongly correlated in T2DM. However, we do not know whether this association is direct or indirect via liver fat content, and the link between rbp4 and triglyceride metabolism remains unknown.
Methods and Results—Liver fat measurement by proton spectroscopy was performed in 221 patients with T2DM, and an in vivo kinetic study with stable isotopes was carried out in 14 patients with T2DM. In multivariate analysis, triglycerides were associated positively with rbp4 (β=0.273, P<0.0001), apolipoprotein (apo) B (β=0.258, P<0.0001), and liver fat (β=0.191, P=0.002) and negatively with high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (β=−0.442, P<0.0001). rbp4 was correlated positively with apoB100 very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) pool (r=0.62, P=0.017) and negatively with VLDL-apoB100 total fractional catabolic rate (r=−0.66, P=0.001). In multivariate analysis, rbp4 (P=0.015), plasma triglycerides (P=0.024), and sex (P=0.026) were independently associated with VLDL-apoB100 total fractional catabolic rate.
Conclusion—In T2DM, plasma rbp4 level is associated with plasma triglycerides, independently of liver fat content. There is a strong independent negative correlation between plasma rbp4 and VLDL-apoB100 total fractional catabolic rate. These data suggest that rbp4 may be involved in the pathophysiology of hypertriglyceridemia in T2DM by reducing VLDL catabolism.
- Received June 14, 2012.
- Accepted October 8, 2012.
- © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.