Serum fatty acid binding protein 4, free fatty acids, and metabolic risk markers

Siddika E Karakas, Rogelio U. Almario, Kyoungmi Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Fatty acid binding protein (FABP) 4 chaperones free fatty acids (FFAs) in the adipocytes during lipolysis. Serum FFA relates to metabolic syndrome, and serum FABP4 is emerging as a novel risk marker. In 36 overweight/obese women, serum FABP4 and FFA were measured hourly during 5-hour oral glucose tolerance test. Insulin resistance was determined using frequently sampled intravenous glucose tolerance test. Serum lipids and inflammation markers were measured at fasting. During oral glucose tolerance test, serum FABP4 decreased by 40%, reaching its nadir at 3 hours (from 45.3 ± 3.1 to 31.9 ± 1.6 ng/mL), and stayed below the baseline at 5 hours (35.9 ± 2.2 ng/mL) (P < .0001 for both, compared with the baseline). Serum FFA decreased by 10-fold, reaching a nadir at 2 hours (from 0.611 ± 0.033 to 0.067 ± 0.004 mmol/L), then rebounded to 0.816 ± 0.035 mmol/L at 5 hours (P < .001 for both, compared with baseline). Both fasting FABP4 and nadir FABP4 correlated with obesity. Nadir FABP4 correlated also with insulin resistance parameters from frequently sampled intravenous glucose tolerance test and with inflammation. Nadir FFA, but not fasting FFA, correlated with the metabolic syndrome parameters. In conclusion, fasting FABP4 related to metabolic risk markers more strongly than fasting FFA. Nadir FABP4 and nadir FFA measured after glucose loading may provide better risk assessment than the fasting values.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1002-1007
Number of pages6
JournalMetabolism: Clinical and Experimental
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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