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Kristin Ottarsdottir, Margareta Hellgren, David Bock, Anna G Nilsson and Bledar Daka

Purpose

We aimed to investigate the association between SHBG and the homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-Ir) in men and women in a prospective observational study.

Methods

The Vara-Skövde cohort is a random population of 2816 participants living in southwestern Sweden, aged 30–74. It was recruited between 2002 and 2005, and followed up in 2012–2014. After excluding participants on insulin therapy or hormone replacement therapy, 1193 individuals (649 men, 544 women) were included in the present study. Fasting blood samples were collected at both visits and stored in biobank. All participants were physically examined by a trained nurse. SHBG was measured with immunoassay technique. Linear regressions were computed to investigate the association between SHBG and HOMA-Ir both in cross-sectional and longitudinal analyses, adjusting for confounding factors.

Results

The mean follow-up time was 9.7 ± 1.4 years. Concentrations of SHBG were significantly inversely associated with log transformed HOMA-Ir in all groups with estimated standardized slopes (95% CI): men: −0.20 (−0.3;−0.1), premenopausal women: −0.26 (−0.4;−0.2), postmenopausal women: −0.13 (−0.3;−0.0) at visit 1. At visit 2 the results were similar. When comparing the groups, a statistically significant difference was found between men and post-menopausal women (0.12 (0.0;0.2) P value = 0.04). In the fully adjusted model, SHBG at visit 1 was also associated with HOMA-Ir at visit 2, and the estimated slopes were −0.16 (−0.2;−0.1), −0.16 (−0.3;−0.1) and −0.07 (−0.2;0.0) for men, premenopausal and postmenopausal women, respectively.

Main conclusion

Levels of SHBG predicted the development of insulin resistance in both men and women, regardless of menopausal state.