Serum amylase and risk of the metabolic syndrome in Korean adults

Clin Chim Acta. 2011 Sep 18;412(19-20):1848-53. doi: 10.1016/j.cca.2011.06.023. Epub 2011 Jun 25.


Background: Serum amylase has recently been shown to be associated with ghrelin and adiponectin as well as obesity. We investigated the relationship between total amylase and metabolic syndrome in adults.

Methods: 4495 adults were enrolled. All subjects denied any medical history or status of a disorder that could influence their serum amylase. Anthropometry, metabolic risk factors and total amylase concentration were measured. Each participant was categorized into one of 4 subgroups according to their total amylase concentration. Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to assess the independent association between amylase concentration and metabolic syndrome. Receiver-operating characteristics (ROC) curves analyses were used for comparison of the diagnostic value of amylase and other biomarkers for metabolic syndrome.

Results: The prevalence of metabolic syndrome by the National Cholesterol Education Program criteria was 13.4%, 15.3%, 19.3%, and 24.2% of those in the fourth, third, second, and lowest quartile of amylase concentration (P for trend <0.001). After adjusting for age, sex, and body mass index, the odds ratios of the lower quartiles were significantly higher compared to the fourth quartile for the presence of metabolic syndrome. In ROC curve analysis, amylase was similar to uric acid as a significant diagnostic indicator for metabolic syndrome, but it had lower diagnostic value than alanine aminotransferase, γ-glutamyltransferase or C-reactive protein.

Conclusions: Lower amylase concentration is associated with an increased prevalence of metabolic syndrome. Amylase may contribute to identifying metabolic syndrome, although further research is needed to understand the mechanism behind these associations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amylases / blood*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Metabolic Syndrome / blood
  • Metabolic Syndrome / enzymology
  • Metabolic Syndrome / epidemiology*
  • Middle Aged
  • ROC Curve
  • Republic of Korea / epidemiology
  • Risk Factors


  • Amylases