Gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase and the metabolic syndrome in a Taiwanese aboriginal population

Chih I. Ho, Yu Chung Tsao, Jau Yuan Chen, Ko Chen Chang, Yi Wen Tsai, Jung Soon Lin, Shy Shin Chang

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4 Citations (Scopus)


The prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) depends on the population, geographic region, and urbanization. Currently, there are no data on the prevalence of MetS among Taiwanese aboriginal populations. The present study aims to determine the prevalence of MetS in a Taiwanese aboriginal population, as well as determine the relationship between serum gamma glutamyl transferase (GGT) and MetS. This study was a population-based, cross-sectional study conducted in the remote area of the Fuxing Township, Taoyuan County in Taiwan. A total of 195 highland aboriginal individuals from the Atayal tribe were enrolled, of whom 84 (43.1 %) were male and 111 (56.9 %) were female. The prevalence rates of MetS and its risk factors at different serum GGT levels were determined. The prevalence of MetS, according to the revised NCEP/ATPIII criteria, was 48.7 % in the Atayal tribe (i.e. 42.9 % in males and 53.2 % in females). After adjusting for age, sex, alcohol consumption, alanine aminotransferase, and aspartate transaminase, the odds ratios (OR) for MetS across the serum GGT tertiles (i.e. 1-27 U/L, 28-54 U/L, and ≥55 U/L in men; and 1-22 U/L, 23-44 U/L and ≥45 U/L in women) were 1, 1.7 (95 % CI: 1.2-2.7), and 3.1 (95 % CI: 1.4-7.2), respectively. Central obesity was the most common risk factor for MetS, and the higher GGT tertile was significantly associated with higher waist circumference and triglyceride levels. These findings suggest that the overall prevalence of MetS is higher in the highland aboriginal population than the metropolitan populations of Taiwan. Additionally, higher serum GGT levels are significantly associated with MetS and its risk factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-154
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Diabetes in Developing Countries
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Aboriginals
  • Gamma glutamyl transferase
  • Metabolic syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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