Correlation of plasma amino acid and anthropometric profiles with brown adipose tissue density in humans

Miyuki Kuroiwa, Sayuri Hamaoka-Fuse, Masahiro Sugimoto, Yuko Kurosawa, Yasuko Aita, Atsumi Tomita, Mikiko Anjo, Riki Tanaka, Tasuki Endo, Ryotaro Kime, Takafumi Hamaoka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined the relationship between plasma amino acid (AA) concentrations, including branched-chain AAs, and brown adipose tissue density (BAT-d). One hundred and seventy-three subjects (69 men, 104 women) aged 22–68 years were recruited during the winter season. AAs were comprehensively quantified using liquid chromatography-time-of-flight-mass spectrometry. The total hemoglobin concentration in the supraclavicular region ([total-Hb]sup), an indicator of BAT-d, was assessed using near-infrared time-resolved spectroscopy. Anthropometric parameters, including age, percentage of body fat, and visceral fat, were evaluated. Factors associated with higher (≥74 µM) or lower (<74 µM) [total-Hb]sup were investigated by multiple logistic regression models that included AA concentrations alone (model 1) or AA concentrations and anthropometric parameters (model 2) as independent variables. When adjusted for the false discovery rate, [total-Hb]sup was positively correlated with glycine and asparagine levels in men and with the serine level in both men and women and was negatively correlated with the branched-chain AA concentration in men. Models 1 and 2 correlated with higher or lower BAT-d for men (r = 0.73, p = 0.015) and women (r = 0.58, p = 0.079) and for men (r = 0.82, p = 0.0070) and women (r = 0.70, p = 0.020), respectively. A combination of anthropometric parameters and plasma AA concentrations could be a reliable biomarker for higher and lower BAT-d.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2339
JournalJournal of Clinical Medicine
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Jun 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Amino acid concentrations
  • Anthropometric parameters
  • Biomarker
  • Brown adipose tissue
  • Plasma

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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