Objective: The relationship between variants of the leptin gene (LEP) and obesity and metabolic biomarkers was investigated in Brazilian individuals.
Subjects and methods: One-hundred-ten obese (BMI > 30 kg/m(2)) and 100 non-obese individuals (145 women and 65 men, aged 49 +/- 14 years) were randomly selected. Plasma leptin, glycemia, serum lipid measurements and LEP -2548G>A and 3'HVR polymorphisms were analyzed.
Results: The LEP -2548GG genotype was associated with a 2.2% and 2.0% increase in BMI (p = 0.009) and plasma leptin (p = 0.031), respectively. 3'HVR I/II (classes I/I+I/II) genotypes contributed with 1.8% of BMI values (p = 0.046). LEP I/G combined genotypes (I/IGG, I/IGA and I/IIGG) were associated with obesity, and increased BMI, waist circumference, leptin and triglycerides (p < 0.05). These relationships were found in women (p < 0.05) but not in men. LEP I/G combined genotypes were not associated with hypertension, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia and coronary artery disease.
Conclusions: LEP I/G combined genotypes are associated with obesity-related metabolic biomarkers and phenotype in a gender-dependent manner.