Objective. Serum bilirubin level has shown to be inversely associated with coronary atherosclerosis, and may serve as a protective biomarker of coronary artery disease. Serum bilirubin has also been shown to be negatively associated with brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV) in men without a history of hypertension, and in men with hypertension. It is unknown whether such associations can be observed in the pre-hypertensive or normotensive population. This study thus aimed to investigate the relationship between serum bilirubin level and increased arterial stiffness in subjects with pre-hypertension and normotension for both genders. Methods. A cross-sectional sample of 3,399 apparently healthy subjects undergoing a medical check-up at National Cheng Kung University Hospital was enrolled between October 2006 and August 2009, after excluding subjects with serum total bilirubin level greater than 20.52 μmol/L. Increased arterial stiffness was defined as baPWV of 1,400 cm/s or higher as the dichotomous variable and bilirubin as the continuous variable. Results. Based on multiple linear regression analysis, serum bilirubin level was inversely associated with baPWV in non-hypertensive men (β = -0.066, p < 0.001) but not in non-hypertensive women. In addition, the inverse relationship between bilirubin level and baPWV was found statistically significant only in pre-hypertensive men (β = -0.110, p < 0.001). Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that serum bilirubin was inversely associated with increased arterial stiffness in men with pre-hypertension (odds ratio = 0.955, 95% confidence interval = 0.916-0.996, p < 0.05) but not normotension after adjustment for other confounding factors. However, the relationship between total bilirubin level and increased arterial stiffness did not reach statistical significance for female subjects with pre-hypertension and normotension. Conclusion. Serum bilirubin is inversely associated with increased arterial stiffness in men with prehypertension but not normotension. The association between bilirubin level and arterial stiffness was not found significant in women.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)