Heart-type fatty acid binding protein levels in elderly diabetics without known cardiovascular disease
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Background: Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is reported to be higher in elderly diabetics. Serum heart-type fatty acid binding protein (H-FABP) is a serum marker of myocardial ischemia. We aimed to investigate the association between serum H-FABP level and conventional cardiovascular risk factors, inflammatory markers and subclinical atherosclerosis in elderly diabetics without overt CVD. Patients and methods: A total of 50 elderly diabetic patients without overt CVD and 30 age-, sex- and body mass index (BMI)-matched healthy controls were enrolled. Anthropometric and biochemical parameters, serum H-FABP, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP), fibrinogen and carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) were measured. Logistic regression analyses (adjustments for age, sex, hypertension, smoking, diabetes, BMI, blood pressure, lipid, blood glucose, hemoglobin A1c, hs-CRP and fibrinogen) were performed to evaluate the association between H-FABP and cardiovascular risk factors and atherosclerosis indices. Results: Serum fibrinogen (421.50±85.52 mg/dL vs 319.17±30.77 mg/dL, p=0.023), CIMT (0.70±0.12 mm vs 0.59±0.06 mm, p<0.001) and hs-CRP (5.72±4.50 mg/dL vs 1.60±0.72 mg/dL, p<0.001) were significantly higher in diabetic patients than controls. The mean serum H-FABP level did not differ between groups (1571.79±604.60 ng/mL vs 1500.25±463.35 ng/mL, p=0.905). H-FABP was positively correlated with fibrinogen (r2=0.473, p<0.001), hs-CRP (r2=0.323, p=0.003) and CIMT (r2=0.467, p<0.001). After full adjustments, the serum H-FABP level was independently associated with an increase in the fibrinogen level (odds ratio [OR] =4.21, 95% confidence level [CI] =1.49-11.90). Conclusion: Serum H-FABP was similar in the elderly diabetic patients without known CVD when compared with the nondiabetic control group. H-FABP does not possess a high diagnostic value as a cardiovascular marker when used alone; however, it may add supplementary information in patients with a high fibrinogen level. © 2017 Beysel et al.