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PLoS By Category | Recent PLoS Articles
Public Health and Epidemiology - Science Policy

Prospective Analysis of the Association of a Common Variant of FTO (rs9939609) with Adiposity in Children: Results of the IDEFICS Study
Published: Wednesday, November 14, 2012
Author: Fabio Lauria et al.

by Fabio Lauria, Alfonso Siani, Karin Bammann, Ronja Foraita, Inge Huybrechts, Licia Iacoviello, Anna C. Koni, Yannis Kourides, Staffan Marild, Denes Molnar, Luis A. Moreno, Iris Pigeot, Yannis P. Pitsiladis, Toomas Veidebaum, Paola Russo, IDEFICS Consortium

Objectives

We investigated cross-sectionally and longitudinally the relationship between FTO rs9939609 and obesity-related characteristics in the European children of the IDEFICS project and the interaction of this variant with a lifestyle intervention.

Population and Methods

A cohort of 16224 children (2–9 years) was recruited into a population-based survey (T0) from eight European countries. A second survey (T1) reassessed the children two years later. A random sample of 4405 children was extracted for genetic studies. 3168 children were re-examined two years later. Half of them underwent a lifestyle intervention program. The FTO rs9939609 was genotyped. Weight, height, waist circumference, triceps and subscapular skinfolds were measured at T0 and T1.

Results

At T0, the risk A allele of rs9939609 was significantly associated with higher values of body mass index (BMI), waist circumference and skinfolds (age, sex, and country-adjusted p-values: all p<0.001) and with a statistically significant increased risk of overweight/obesity.Over the two year follow-up, no interaction between genotype and intervention was observed. The A allele was associated to a significantly higher increase in all the anthropometric variables examined at T0 independently from the study group (intervention versus control) (p-values: all p<0.002, adjusted for age, sex, country, intervention/control study group, T0 values, and individual time interval between T0 and T1). Over the two-year follow–up, 210 new cases of overweight/obesity occurred. A statistically significant higher incidence of overweight/obesity was associated to the A allele [ORA?=?1.95, 95% CI?=?(1.29; 2.97)].

Conclusions

We confirmed the association between the FTO rs9939609 and body mass and overweight/obesity risk in European children. The main finding of the study is that the A allele carriers present higher increase of body mass and central adiposity over time and higher risk of developing overweight/obesity during growth, independently from intervention measures.

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