Gender-based differences on the association between salt-sensitive genes and obesity in Korean children aged between 8 and 9 years

Myoungsook Lee, Kyung Mi Kim, Seon Mee Kim, Hyesoon Park, Chang Gyu Park, Hye Kyung Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Background High sodium intake is associated with the development of chronic diseases such as obesity. Although its role in obesity remains controversial, there may be a correlation between salt sensitivity and the early onset of chronic diseases in obese children. Methods In all, 2,163 Korean children (1,106 boys and 1,057 girls) aged 8-9 years were recruited from seven elementary schools in Seoul. To evaluate whether obesity risk was modulated by the salt sensitivity, 11 SNPs related to salt sensitive genes (SSG) became the target of sodium intakes in obese children. Results BP, HOMA-IR, LDLc, TG, and the girls' sodium intake significantly increased, but HDLc significantly decreased with increase in BMI. Regardless of sex, the obesity risk was 5.27-fold (CI; 1.320-27.560) higher in the Q2 to Q5 of sodium intake adjusted by energy (4044.9-5058.9 mg/day) than in the lowest Q1 level (2287.6 mg/day) in obese children. BP was sensitively dependent on insulin resistance and lipid accumulation in all subjects; however, sodium intake may be an independent risk factor of obesity without increasing BP in girls. GRK4 A486V mutant homozygote was highly distributed in the obese group, but other SNPs had no impact. The obesity risk increased 7.06, 16.8, and 46.09-fold more in boys with GRK4 A486V, ACE, and SLC12A3 mutants as sodium intake increased. Among girls, the obesity risk increased in GRK4 A486V heterozygote and CYP11β-2 mutant homozygote although sodium intake was relatively lower, implying that ACE, SLC12A, CYP11β-2, and GRK4 A486V polymorphisms showed gender-based differences with regard to interaction between sodium intake and obesity. Conclusion A high sodium intake markedly increased the obesity risk in variants of GRK4 A486V regardless of sex. The obesity risk increased with GRK4 A486V, ACE, and SLC12A3 variants in boys, whereas it increased with GRK4 A486V and CYP11B2 variants in girls as sodium intake increased. Obese children with the specific gene variants are recommended to reduce their sodium intake.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0120111
JournalPloS one
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Mar 13
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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