Further Studies of the Influence of Apolipoprotein B Alleles on Glucose and Lipid Metabolism

The effect of five genetic polymorphisms in the apolipoprotein B gene on parameters of lipid and glucose metabolism was assessed in 564 Danish mono- and dizygotic twins. Genotypes in apolipoprotein B T71I (ApaLI RFLP), A591V (AluI RFLP), L2712P (MvaI RFLP), R3611Q (MspI RFLP), and E4154K (EcoRI RFLP) were established using polymerase chain reaction and restriction enzyme digests. The effect of genotypes on lipid levels and on glucose, insulin, and HOMA (i.e., calculated parameters of beta-cell function and insulin resistance) was assessed by multivariate analyses of variance correcting for the effect of gender, age, glucose tolerance status, and body mass index. The effect of genotype on the risk of having impaired glucose metabolism was calculated by logistic regression analysis. Finally, linkage between allele sharing and physiological parameters was calculated by the new Haseman-Elston method. The allele frequencies of all five polymorphisms were similar to those previously reported for Caucasian populations. The L2711P (MvaI RFLP) polymorphism influenced LDL-cholesterol and LDL-to-HDL measures (p = 0.04 and 0.03, respectively), while the R3611Q (MspI RFLP) polymorphism had an effect on the insulin-to-glucose ratio (p = 0.04), and E4154K (EcoRI RFLP) influenced HOMAbeta (p = 0.04). Significant interactions were observed between genotype in T71I (ApaLI RFLP), A591V (AluI RFLP), R3611Q (MspI RFLP), and E4154K (EcoRI RFLP) and glucose tolerance on lipid-related parameters (0.03 < p < 0.004), and between genotype in L2712P (MvaI RFLP) and E4154K (EcoRI RFLP) and gender on lipid and glucose-related parameters (0.02 < p < 0.003). No genotypes were significantly associated with impaired glucose tolerance measured by logistic regression. Likewise, no effect of allele sharing in the five polymorphisms was seen in the dizygotic twins. The effect of the polymorphisms on lipid and glucose parameters could be mediated through linkage to genes with known effect on glucose metabolism or through free fatty acids exerting their effect on glucose metabolism.