Associations among osteocalcin, leptin and metabolic health in children ages 9-13 years in the United States

Kelly Virecoulon Giudici, Joseph M Kindler, Berdine R Martin, Emma M Laing, George P McCabe, Linda D McCabe, Dorothy B Hausman, Lígia Araújo Martini, Richard D Lewis, Connie M Weaver, Munro Peacock, Kathleen M Hill Gallant

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BACKGROUND: This study aimed to investigate the relationships among osteocalcin, leptin and metabolic health outcomes in children ages 9-13 years.

METHODS: This was a cross-sectional analysis of baseline data from 161 boys and 157 girls (ages 9-13 years) who previously participated in a double-blinded randomized placebo controlled trial of vitamin D supplementation. Relationships among fasting serum total osteocalcin (tOC), undercarboxylated osteocalcin (ucOC), leptin, and metabolic health outcomes were analyzed.

RESULTS: Approximately 52% of study participants were obese based on percent body fat cutoffs (>25% for boys and >32% for girls) and about 5% had fasting serum glucose within the prediabetic range (i.e. 100 to 125 mg/dL). Serum tOC was not correlated with leptin, glucose, insulin, HOMA-IR, or HOMA-β after adjusting for percent body fat. However, serum ucOC negatively correlated with leptin (partial r = -0.16; p = 0.04) and glucose (partial r = -0.16; p = 0.04) after adjustment for percent body fat. Leptin was a positive predictor of insulin, glucose, HOMA-IR, and HOMA-β after adjusting for age, sex and percent body fat (all p < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: These data depict an inverse relationship between leptin and various metabolic health outcomes in children. However, the notion that tOC or ucOC link fat with energy metabolism in healthy children was not supported.


Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25
JournalNutrition & Metabolism
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes

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  • Journal Article


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