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C-reactive protein is elevated in the offspring of parents with essential hypertension
  1. Juan Jose Díaz1,
  2. Juan Arguelles2,
  3. Ignacio Málaga1,
  4. Carmen Perillán2,
  5. Angeles Diéguez3,
  6. Manuel Vijande2,
  7. Serafín Málaga1
  1. 1Departamento de Pediatría, Hospital Universitario Central de Asturias, Oviedo, Spain
  2. 2Departamento de Biología Funcional, Area de Fisiología, Universidad de Oviedo, Oviedo, Spain
  3. 3Servicio de Inmunología, Hospital Universitario Central de Asturias, Oviedo, Spain
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr Serafín Málaga
    Departamento de Pediatría, Hospital Universitario Central de Asturias, C/Celestino Villamil, s.n. 33006-Oviedo, Spain; smalaga{at}


Background: Hypertension is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Studies in adults have shown that high sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP) levels are associated with increased risk of CVD and essential hypertension (EHT). Genetic background is widely accepted as a risk factor for CVD. The aim of the present study was to analyse the association of high sensitivity CRP levels with other cardiovascular risk factors in children and young adults with at least one parent with EHT.

Methods: Fifty one healthy children and young adults (28 boys) with at least one parent with hypertension and 69 (41 boys) whose parents did not have hypertension were recruited prospectively from primary care centres. High sensitivity CRP, fasting lipid profile, blood pressure (BP) and anthropometric variables were obtained for all participants.

Results: CRP values were higher in the study group than in controls (logCRP mean difference: −0.69; 95% confidence interval: −1.05 to −0.33), even when differences were adjusted for age, gender, body mass index (BMI) and triglyceride levels (p = 0.01). No differences were observed in BP values between groups. In the study group, 35.3% of the participants had a CRP level ⩾1 mg/l compared to 14.5% in the control group (p = 0.009). CRP showed a significant correlation with body weight (rho = 0.28, p = 0.04), BMI (rho = 0.32; p = 0.02) and ponderosity index (rho = 0.28; p<0.05).

Conclusions: CRP is significantly higher in the offspring of parents with EHT. A significant positive relationship exists between BMI and serum CRP levels in this high risk group of children and young adults.

  • BMI, body mass index
  • BP, blood pressure
  • CRP, C-reactive protein
  • CVD, cardiovascular disease
  • DBP, diastolic blood pressure
  • EHT, essential hypertension
  • HDL-C, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol
  • LDL-C, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol
  • PI, ponderosity index
  • SBP, systolic blood pressure
  • SD, standard deviation
  • TC, total cholesterol
  • TG, triglycerides

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