Author + information
- Received May 22, 2012
- Revision received July 24, 2012
- Accepted August 7, 2012
- Published online December 25, 2012.
- Marietta Charakida, PhD⁎,⁎ (, )
- Alexander Jones, PhD⁎,
- Emanuela Falaschetti, MSc⁎,
- Tauseef Khan, PhD⁎,
- Nicholas Finer, MB, BS†,
- Naveed Sattar, MD‡,
- Aroon Hingorani, PhD†,
- Debbie A. Lawlor, PhD§,
- George Davey Smith, DSc§ and
- John E. Deanfield, MB, BChir⁎
- ↵⁎Reprint requests and correspondence:
Dr. Marietta Charakida, Vascular Physiology Unit, Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, NHS Trust, 30 Guilford Street, London WC1N 3EH, United Kingdom
Objectives This study sought to assess the associations of childhood adiposity with vascular phenotype in pre-pubertal children.
Background The early-life metabolic consequences have consistently been demonstrated in obese children, but the time course and development of any vascular changes remain largely unexplored.
Methods A total of 6,576 children age 10 to 11 years from the ALSPAC (Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children) were studied. Childhood overweight and obesity were based on body mass index contemporary to vascular measures and supported by other adiposity measures, including fat mass and waist circumference on dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry. Heart rate, blood pressure, flow-mediated dilation in the brachial artery, and carotid to radial pulse wave velocity were measured in all children.
Results Overweight and obese children had higher heart rates (mean 72.4 ± 11 beats/min and 74.6 ± 12.2 beats/min vs. 71.7 ± 11 beats/min) and systolic blood pressures (mean 106.3 ± 9.1 mm Hg and 108 ± 10.2 mm Hg vs. 103.6 ± 9 mm Hg) compared with normal-weight peers. However, obese children had greater brachial diameters and resting and hyperemic blood flow, marginally increased endothelial function (higher flow-mediated dilation: mean 8.2 ± 3.2% vs. 8.1 ± 3.3%), and lower arterial stiffness (pulse wave velocity: mean 6.99 ± 1.0 m/s vs. 7.05 ± 1.23 m/s) compared with normal-weight children. These findings were not explained by metabolic differences.
Conclusions Greater childhood adiposity is associated with adverse cardiometabolic risk factors, but with no evidence of vascular damage at age 9 to 11 years. This could represent physiological adaptation to the hyperemic state of adiposity in childhood.
The Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children was funded by the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust, the UK Department of Health, the Department of the Environment, the Department for Education and Employment, the National Institutes of Health, and a variety of medical research charities and commercial companies. Dr. Deanfield is supported by the British Heart Foundation. Dr. Hingorani is supported by a British Heart Foundation Senior Research Fellowship (FS05/125). The analyses described in this report were conducted independently of the funders, who were not involved in the decision to submit the report for publication. Drs. Charakida and Jones contributed equally to this work.
- Received May 22, 2012.
- Revision received July 24, 2012.
- Accepted August 7, 2012.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation