Dietary Intakes and Circulating Concentrations of Branched-Chain Amino Acids in Relation to Incident Type 2 Diabetes Risk Among High-Risk Women with a History of Gestational Diabetes Mellitus.

Clin Chem

BACKGROUND: Circulating branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs; isoleucine, leucine, valine) are consistently associated with increased type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk, but the relationship with dietary intake of BCAAs is less clear.

METHODS: The longitudinal Nurses' Health Study II cohort conducted a blood collection from 1996 to 1999. We profiled plasma metabolites among 172 incident T2D cases and 175 age-matched controls from women reporting a history of gestational diabetes before blood draw. We estimated dietary energy-adjusted BCAAs from food frequency questionnaires. We used conditional logistic regression models to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% CI of T2D risk across quartiles (Q1-Q4) of BCAAs, adjusting for age, body mass index (BMI), physical activity, family history, and other established risk factors. We also assessed joint exposure to below/above medians of diet and plasma concentrations, with lower diet/lower plasma as reference.

RESULTS: Dietary and plasma BCAA concentrations were positively associated with incident T2D (diet Q4 vs Q1 OR = 4.6, CI = 1.6, 13.4; plasma Q4 vs Q1 OR = 4.4, CI = 1.4, 13.4). Modeling the joint association indicated that higher diet BCAAs were associated with T2D when plasma concentrations were also higher (OR = 6.0, CI = 2.1, 17.2) but not when concentrations were lower (OR = 1.6, CI = 0.61, 4.1). Conversely, higher plasma BCAAs were associated with increased T2D for either lower or higher diet.

CONCLUSIONS: Independent of BMI and other risk factors, higher diet and plasma BCAA concentrations were associated with an increased incident T2D risk among high-risk women with a history of gestational diabetes, supporting impaired BCAA metabolism as conferring T2D risk.

Year of Publication
Clin Chem
Date Published
2018 08
PubMed ID
PubMed Central ID
Grant list
P30 DK040561 / DK / NIDDK NIH HHS / United States
UM1 CA176726 / CA / NCI NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275201000020C / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
K01 DK103720 / DK / NIDDK NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275200800002C / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275201300002C / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275201300026I / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275201300006C / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275201300002I / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States
R01 CA067262 / CA / NCI NIH HHS / United States
HHSN275200800002I / HD / NICHD NIH HHS / United States