ESPE Abstracts (2014) 82 P-D-3-1-770

Understanding How Race Influences Plasma Peptide YY in the Aging Population

Kamille Camacho-Monclovaa,b, Dillip Jestea & Pei-an Betty Shiha


aUniversity of California–San Diego, San Diego, California, USA; bUniversity of Puerto Rico at Cayey, Cayey, Puerto Rico


Background: Appetite change and metabolic complications have been studied to understand implications in the elderly cardiometabolic health. Peptide YY (PYY) plays an important role in appetite regulation; therefore is associated with obesity risks and metabolic syndrome (MetS). MetS risk reported to differ in multiple racial categories, yet the mechanisms that drive this risk are not well understood.

Objective and hypotheses: Our overall research aim is to understand MetS risk in a cohort of psychiatric patients. PYY is a risk factor for MetS. The specific goal of my summer project is to assess how race influences PYY. MetS differs in severity and prevalence across different racial groups, therefore our hypothesis is that PYY. Level may also be different across different racial groups.

Method: We utilized a pre-existing clinical data set containing patients with multiple self-reported racial categories (predominately Caucasian and African American) who are at increased risk of MetS from factors associated with their mental illnesses. A total of 174 older patients (60 females/114 males, mean age=66.74±13.07) with major psychiatric illnesses were included in the statistical analysis. The subjects are 139 Caucasians, 24 African Americans, and 11 others (ethnic minorities combined). Two different types of statistical analysis were performed. ANOVA and analysis of covariance (ANCOVA).

Results: Race does appear to have a significant association with PYY levels even after removing the confounding effect of the covariates. The literature shows that MetS risk varies by racial groups. In our data, PYY level varies significantly by racial groups, even after accounting for the effects of conventional covariates. Caucasians appear to have the highest level of plasma PYY compared to African American and individuals from other minority races. Understanding how PYY contributes to the risk of MetS may aid in reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with MetS. Understanding how PYY level observed in each racial group corresponds to differential race-based MetS risk profile and outcome, may lead to better public health intervention and health management.

Conclusion: This research is part of the foundation needed to research the mechanisms of PYY that can lead to a therapeutical strategy to prevent or treat metabolic risks in people with different racial backgrounds.

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