Are variants of the RBP4 gene associated with serum retinol-binding protein 4 concentrations and carotid intima-media thickness values in women with obesity?

Gene. 2024 Jan 30:893:147909. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2023.147909. Epub 2023 Oct 18.


Introduction: Several studies showed the correlation of retinol-binding protein 4 (RBP4) with increased cardiovascular risk - including higher values of carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT) - particularly in individuals with obesity.

Objectives: Our study aimed to investigate the impact of rs10882273; rs3758538; rs3758539, and rs7094671 RBP4 gene variants on RBP4 serum concentrations as well as cIMT values (a marker of subclinical atherosclerosis) among female patients with obesity.

Patients and methods: We recruited 74 women with obesity and 24 women without obesity as a study and control group, respectively. The genotypic and allelic frequencies of RBP4 gene variants were evaluated for associations with serum RBP4 and cIMT.

Results: The median serum RBP4 concentrations were 20.30 µg/mL and 19.80 µg/mL in the patients and control group, respectively (p = 0.740). No significant differences were seen in cIMT values between the two studied groups (0.60 [0.50-1.00] vs. 0.60 ± 0.10 in the patient and control group, respectively); however, the results were close to reaching significance (p = 0.071), similar as in observed association of the minor haplotype AA for rs7084671 and rs375839 with female obesity (p = 0.0559). The correlation analysis showed no significant differences between RBP4 gene variants with serum RBP4 and cIMT.

Conclusions: According to our knowledge, this is the first study investigating the association between RBP4 gene variants and serum RBP4 and cIMT among Polish female patients with obesity. However, our results show that genetic variants rs10882273, rs3758538, rs3758539, and rs7094671 of the RBP4 gene are not associated with RBP4 serum concentrations or cIMT values among women with obesity.

Keywords: Atherosclerosis; Intima-media thickness; Obesity; RBP4 gene variants; Retinol-binding protein 4.

MeSH terms

  • Atherosclerosis* / complications
  • Carotid Intima-Media Thickness*
  • Female
  • Gene Frequency
  • Humans
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / genetics
  • Retinol-Binding Proteins, Plasma / genetics
  • Risk Factors


  • RBP4 protein, human
  • Retinol-Binding Proteins, Plasma