Serum Osteocalcin Levels in Children With Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease

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Abstract

Objectives:

The aim of the study was to investigate the relationship between osteocalcin and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) in children with obesity.

Method:

60 obese children with NAFLD were taken as a patient group and 60 obese children and normal liver with matching age, sex, and body mass index were taken as a control group. Anthropometric measurements, abdominal ultrasonography for diagnosis and grading of NAFLD, and laboratory investigations in the form of liver function tests, lipid profile, fasting serum glucose and insulin, and serum osteocalcin levels were done for all children. Patients with NAFLD were further divided into patients with metabolic syndrome (MS) and patients without MS.

Results:

Age of NAFLD children was (10.55 ± 2.71), 20 boys and 40 girls, whereas age of children in control group was (10.05 ± 3.51), 24 boys and 36 girls (P > 0.05). Patients with NAFLD showed significant increase in waist and hip circumference, alanine aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, total cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin resistance (IR), fasting serum glucose, and insulin, but lower serum osteocalcin level than control group. Serum osteocalcin level is inversely correlated with waist circumference, triglyceride, liver enzymes, fasting serum insulin, fasting serum glucose, IR, and grades of fatty liver. Increase in alanine aminotransferase, total cholesterol, triglycerides, fasting insulin, and IR went with increase in degree of hepatic steatosis. Serum osteocalcin level <44.5 ng/mL is a good predictor for severity of hepatic steatosis with sensitivity and specificity of 80%.

Conclusions:

Osteocalcin plays an important role in glucose and lipid metabolism for protection against NAFLD occurrence and progression. Moreover, it could be a useful marker for progression of NAFLD in children with obesity.

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