Sex-different associations between serum homocysteine, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and sarcopenia: Results from I-Lan Longitudinal Aging Study

W.J. Lee, L.N. Peng, C.H. Loh, L.K. Chen.

Exp Gerontol. 2020 Apr;132:110832. doi: 10.1016/j.exger.2020.110832. Epub 2020 Jan 8.

Both serum homocysteine and high sensitivity C - reactive protein (hsCRP) are inflammatory markers related to vascular aging. Little was known about relationship between hsCRP and homocysteine and sarcopenia. The study aimed to explore the association between these two biomarkers and sarcopenia and its components.

Data of 1582 participants excerpted from first wave of I-Lan Longitudinal Aging Study. Sarcopenia was defined according to criteria of the Asian Working Group of Sarcopenia. Logistic regression was employed to examine the aforementioned associations.

High levels of homocysteine (OR 1.9, 95% CI 1.0-3.6) and hsCRP (OR 3.9, 95% CI 2.2-6.9) were independently associated with sarcopenia. Both biomarkers were significantly associated with weakness (OR 2.9, 95%CI 2.1-4.0 for high level of homocysteine; OR 1.6, 95% CI 1.2-2.0 for high level of hsCRP) and slowness (OR 2.0, 95%CI 1.3-3.0 for high level of homocysteine; OR1.5, 95% CI1.1-2.2 for high level of hsCRP). Stronger associations between high levels of homocysteine and sarcopenia were noted in the women.  

Comment:  The study confirmed positive association between homocysteine, hsCRP and sarcopenia and further highlighted potential roles of both biomarkers in sarcopenia development. Intervention studies are needed to evaluate potential therapeutic benefits of lowering homocysteine and hsCRP in managing sarcopenia.