Potential Biomarkers of Metabolic Syndrome in a Group of Small for Gestational Age Neonates

Petja Fister, Darja Paro-Panjan, Mirjana Zupancic, Aleš Jerin, Milan Skitek


Objective - Small for gestational age (SGA) infants have an increased risk of developing metabolic syndrome (MS) later in life. The aim of our study was to analyze some of the potential MS biomarkers in SGA neonates and to find the most indicative neonatal biomarker associated with MS in SGA.

Materials and Methods - Serum adiponectin, fasting glucose, insulin, total cholesterol, high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, and triglycerides were evaluated in 43 small (SGA) and 25 appropriate for gestational age (AGA) neonates in the first month of life. Glucose/insulin (G/I) ratio and the homeostasis model assessment of insulin resistance index (HOMA-IR) were calculated.

Results - Mean serum adiponectin in SGA was significantly lower than in AGA neonates (36.6 vs. 42.6 mg/L, P=0.021). In SGA infants a statistically insignificant higher fasting insulin levels (9.8 vs. 6.4 mIU/L), lower G/I ratio (1.9 vs. 3.0 mol/IU) and higher HOMA-IR (2.6 vs. 1.4) was observed. The mean serum triglyceride level in SGA neonates was significantly higher than in AGA neonates (1.7 vs. 1.4 mmol/L, P=0.031).

Conclusion - SGA neonates demonstrated significantly reduced serum adiponectin and significantly increased serum triglyceride levels in comparison to AGA infants in the first month of life. Triglycerides appeared to be the most promising biomarker reflecting metabolic tendencies in SGA newborns and could possibly be used in predicting the future development of MS.


Neonate; Small for Gestational Age; Adiponectin; Insulin Resistance; Plasma Lipids; Metabolic Syndrome

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