Background and objectives: The pesticide metabolite p,p'-DDE has been associated with left ventricular (LV) mass and known risk factors for LV hypertrophy in humans and in experimental models. We hypothesized that the associations of p,p'-DDE with LV hypertrophy risk factors, namely elevated glucose, adiposity and hypertension, mediate the association of p,p'-DDE with LV mass.
Methods: p,p'-DDE was measured in plasma from 70-year-old subjects (n = 988) of the Prospective Study of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS). When these subjects were 70-, 75- and 80- years old, LV characteristics were measured by echocardiography, while fasting glucose, body mass index (BMI) and blood pressure were assessed with standard clinical techniques.
Results: We found that p,p'-DDE levels were associated with increased fasting glucose, BMI, hypertension and LV mass in separate models adjusted for sex. Structural equation modeling revealed that the association between p,p'-DDE and LV mass was almost entirely mediated by BMI (70%), and also by hypertension (19%).
Conclusion: The obesogenic effect of p,p'-DDE is a major determinant responsible for the association of p,p'-DDE with LV mass.
Keywords: Glucose; Hypertension; Left ventricular hypertrophy; Obesity; P,p′-DDE.
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