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Clinical Trial
. 2002 Feb 5;105(5):564-9.
doi: 10.1161/hc0502.103331.

Weight Loss Reduces C-reactive Protein Levels in Obese Postmenopausal Women

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Clinical Trial

Weight Loss Reduces C-reactive Protein Levels in Obese Postmenopausal Women

André Tchernof et al. Circulation. .

Abstract

Background: C-reactive protein (CRP) has been proposed as an independent risk factor for cardiovascular disease and has been positively associated with body weight and body fatness. We examined the hypothesis that weight loss would reduce plasma CRP levels in obese postmenopausal women.

Methods and results: In a sample of 61 obese (body mass index, 35.6 +/- 5.0 kg/m(2)), postmenopausal women (age, 56.4 +/- 5.2 years), we found that plasma CRP levels were positively associated with dual x-ray absorptiometry-measured total body fatness (r=0.36, P<0.005) and CT-measured intra-abdominal body fat area (r=0.30, P<0.02). Significant correlations were also found between plasma CRP and triglyceride levels (r=0.33, P<0.009) and glucose disposal measured by the hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamp technique (r=-0.29, P<0.03). Twenty-five of the 61 women tested at baseline completed a weight loss protocol. The average weight loss was 14.5 +/- 6.2 kg (-15.6%, P<0.0001), with losses of 10.4 +/- 5.4 kg fat mass (-25.0%, P<0.0001) and 2.8 +/- 1.4 kg fat-free mass (-6.0%, P<0.0001). Visceral and subcutaneous fat areas were reduced by -36.4% and -23.7%, respectively (P<0.0001). Plasma CRP levels were significantly reduced by weight loss: average -32.3%, from 3.06 (+0.69, -1.29) to 1.63 (+0.70, -0.75) microgram/mL (P<0.0001, medians and interquartile differences). Changes in body weight and in total body fat mass were both positively associated with plasma CRP level reductions.

Conclusions: Adiposity was a significant predictor of plasma CRP in postmenopausal women on a cross-sectional basis. Moreover, caloric restriction-induced weight loss decreased plasma CRP levels. Weight loss may represent an important intervention to reduce CRP levels, which may mediate part of its cardioprotective effects in obese postmenopausal women.

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