Evaluation of Ethnic Variations in Visceral, Subcutaneous, Intra-pancreatic, and Intra-hepatic Fat Depositions by Magnetic Resonance Imaging Among New Zealanders
Yang, JZ; Dokpuang, D; Nemati, R; He, KH; Zheng, AB; Petrov, MS; Lu, J
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Anthropometric indices, such as body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), and waist to height ratio (WHtR), have limitations in accurately predicting the pathophysiology of diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular diseases, and metabolic syndrome due to ethnic differences in fat distribution. Recent studies showed that the visceral adipose tissue (VAT) deposition and fat content of internal organs, most notably intra-hepatic and intra-pancreatic fat, has emerged as a more important parameter. In this study, we aimed to assess the coordination between the traditional anthropometric indices and the various fat depositions within different ethnicities in New Zealand. We recruited 104 participants with different ethnic backgrounds, including New Zealand Europeans, Māori (the indigenous people of New Zealand), Pacific Islanders (PI), and Asians. Their weight, height, and WC were measured, and subcutaneous, visceral, intra-hepatic, and intra-pancreatic fat depositions were obtained by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The result showed VAT, but not subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) depositions at all levels were significantly varied among the three groups. BMI was associated best with L23SAT in NZ Europeans (30%) and L45VAT in Māori/PI (24.3%). WC and WHtR were correlated well with L45SAT in the total population (18.8% and 12.2%, respectively). Intra-pancreatic fat deposition had a positive Pearson relationship with NZ European BMI and Māori/PI WC, but no regression correlation with anthropometric indices. Conventional anthropometric indices did not correspond to the same fat depositions across different ethnic groups.