Cross-trait familial resemblance for resting blood pressure and body composition and fat distribution: The HERITAGE family study

Ping An, Treva Rice, Jacques Gagnon, Arthur S. Leon, James S. Skinner, Jack H. Wilmore, Claude Bouchard, D. C. Rao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cross-trait familial resemblance between resting blood pressure (BP) and body composition and fat distribution was examined in 98 Caucasian families participating in the HERITAGE Family Study by using a multivariate familial correlation model assessing both intraindividual and interindividual cross-trait correlations. The 520 family members were sedentary at baseline examination, and both resting systolic (SBP) and diastolic (DBP) BP were cross-analyzed with each of the following 10 indications of body composition and fat distribution: percent body fat (%BF), abdominal visceral fat (AVF), body mass index (BMI), fat-free mass (FFM), fat mass (FM), sum of eight skinfolds (SF), total abdominal fat (TAF), ratio of trunkto-extremity skinfolds (TER), waist circumference (WAIST), ratio of waist-to-hip circumferences (WHR). Five of the variables were also corrected for fat mass (AVFf, TAFf, TERf, WAISTf, WHRf) to index these measures independent of total degree of adiposity. In general, the results suggested strictly intraindividual cross-trait resemblance, with occasional spouse cross-trait resemblance, but few or no sibling or parent-offspring cross-trait correlations. This pattern is largely consistent with nongenetic specific environmental determinants for the BP-body composition and fat distribution covariation, with possibly some common environmental influence between spouses and negligible genetic effects. The only findings suggesting any familial cross-trait resemblance were significant sibling correlations for DBP-FFM and DBP-WHR, although the parent-offspring correlation was not significant. These findings suggest that the observed BP-body composition and fat distribution cross-trait correlations in these sedentary families are probably not due to multifactorial effects such as polygenic and/or common familial environmental effects. Whether or not other factors such as nonadditive ef-fects are involved warrants further investigation using other methods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)32-41
Number of pages10
JournalAmerican Journal of Human Biology
Volume12
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2000

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