Background: Fatty acid-binding protein 4 (FABP4) is expressed in both adipocytes and macrophages. Recent studies have shown secretion of FABP4 from adipocytes and association of elevated serum FABP4 level with obesity, insulin resistance, hypertension, and atherosclerosis. However, little is known about role of FABP4 in cardiac function.
Methods: From the database of the Tanno-Sobetsu Study, data for 190 subjects (male/female: 82/108) who were not treated with any medication and underwent echocardiography in 2011 or 2012 were retrieved for analyses of relationships between serum FABP4 concentration, metabolic markers and parameters of echocardiography.
Results: Serum FABP4 level was positively correlated with age, body mass index (BMI), blood pressure (BP), LDL cholesterol, HOMA-R and mean left ventricular (LV) wall thickness (LVWT, males: r = 0.315, females: r = 0.401, p < 0.01) and was negatively correlated with HDL cholesterol, estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) and peak myocardial velocity during early diastole (e'; males: r = -0.434, females: r = -0.353, p < 0.01), an index of LV diastolic function. However, no significant correlation was found between FABP4 level and LV end-diastolic dimension, LV ejection fraction or LV mass index. There were significant correlations of e' with age, BMI, BP, eGFR, brain natriuretic peptide (BNP), FABP4, metabolic markers and LVWT. Multivariate regression analysis adjusted by HOMA-R, BMI, eGFR, BNP or LVWT in addition to age, gender and BP revealed that serum FABP4 concentration was independently correlated with e'.
Conclusions: Elevation of circulating FABP4 may contribute to LV diastolic dysfunction in a general population.