ESPE Abstracts (2014) 82 P-D-2-1-449

Fibroblast Growth Factor 21 is Inversely Associated with Growth Rates in Infancy

Veronica Mericqa, Francesco De Lucab, Maria_Isabel Hernandeza, Veronica Peñaa, Katherine Rossela, Gabriel Cavadac, Alejandra Avilaa & German Iñigueza


aFaculty of Medicine, Insitute of Maternal and Child Research, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile; bSection of Endocrinology and Diabetes, St Christopher’s Hospital for Children, Drexel University College of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; cPublic Health Department, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile


Background: FGF21 is a metabolic and growth regulator.

Aim: To investigate the role of FGF21 during growth in infancy.

Methods: Cohort of 40 term (T) and 40 preterm (PT) newborns whose length and weight were evaluated prospectively at birth, 6 months, and 12 months. Blood samples for FGF21, IGF1, leptin, insulin and glucose were collected at 6 and 12 months. In addition, FGF21, I GF-I, leptin, and insulin were measured in cord blood in a group of 55 T and 40 PT newborns.

Results: From birth through 12 months of age, PT infants’ linear growth and weight gain were larger than those of T infants, irrespective of birth weight (BW) SDS. At birth and at 12 months, there was no difference in FGF21 levels among infants; in contrast, at 6 months serum FGF21 in T infants was significantly higher than that of PT infants. Length CUG was inversely associated with FGF21 concentrations determined at 6 or 12 months (r=−0.22, P<0.05) and weight (r=0.28, P<0.05) and length change in first year (r=0.65, P<0.05) positively associated with the change (decrease) in FGF21 concentrations. FGF21 level in cord blood was significantly associated with leptin and IGF1 levels, independent of or gestational age or BW SDS.

Conclusions: Our results support the notion that FGF21 in infancy is correlated with weight gain and linear growth rate.

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