Prevalence of metabolic syndrome and risks of abnormal serum Alanine Aminotransferase in Hispanics: A population-based study

Jen Jung Pan, Hui Qi Qu, Anne Rentfro, Joseph B. McCormick, Susan P. Fisher-Hoch, Michael B. Fallon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Aim: Study the prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MS) and risk factors for and association with elevated alanine aminotransferase (ALT) as markers of hepatic injury in a large Hispanic health disparity cohort with high rates of obesity. Methods: Analysis of data from a prospective cross-sectional population based study. From 2004-7, we randomly recruited 2000 community participants to the Cameron County Hispanic Cohort collecting extensive socioeconomic, clinical and laboratory data. We excluded 153 subjects due to critical missing data. Pearson chi-square tests and Student's t-tests were used for categorical and continuous variable analysis, respectively. Logistic regression analysis was performed to determine the risk factors for elevated ALT. Results: The mean age of the cohort was 45 years and 67% were females. The majority of the cohort was either overweight (32.4%) or obese (50.7%). Almost half (43.7%) had MS and nearly one-third diabetes. Elevated ALT level was more prevalent in males than females. Obesity was a strong risk for abnormal ALT in both genders. Hypertriglyceridemia, hypercholesterolemia and young age were risks for elevated ALT in males only, whereas increased fasting plasma glucose was associated with elevated ALT in females only. Conclusion: We identified high prevalence of MS and markers of liver injury in this large Mexican American cohort with gender differences in prevalence and risk factors, with younger males at greatest risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere21515
JournalPloS one
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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