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Volume 17, Issue 6 (November 2015) 17, 991–995; doi: 10.4103/1008-682X.150845

Is serum sex hormone-binding globulin a dominant risk factor for metabolic syndrome?

Yi-Hong Yang1,2, Ming-Jia Zhao3, Shan-Jie Zhou4, Wen-Hong Lu2, Xiao-Wei Liang2, Chen-Liang Xiong5, Chang-Chun Wan6, Xue-Jun Shang7, Yi-Qun Gu1, 2

1Graduate School of Peking Union Medical College, Beijing 100730, China;
2National Health and Family Planning Key Laboratory of Male Reproductive Health, Department of Male Clinical Research, National Research Institute for Family Planning, Beijing 100081, China;
3Department of Reproduction and Genetics, Maternity and Child Health Care Hospital, Tangshan 063000, China;
4Tianjin United Family Hospital and Clinics, Tianjin 300221, China;
5Family Planning Research Institute, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430030, China;
6People’s Hospital of Jinhu, Huaian 211600, China;
7Department of Andrology, Nanjing General Hospital of Nanjing Command, PLA, Nanjing, 210002, China.

Correspondence: Dr. XJ Shang (shangxj98@sina.com) or Dr. YQ Gu (yqgu90@126.com)



This multi‑center, cross‑sectional study investigated the association between serum testosterone (T) levels, serum sex hormone‑binding globulin (SHBG) levels, and the risk of metabolic syndrome (MS) in 3332 adult Chinese men. The prevalence of MS was 34.7%, and men with MS had lower serum levels of total T (TT) and SHBG than those without MS (P < 0.001). There was no significant difference in serum free T (FT) levels between subjects with and without MS (P = 0.627). In logistic regression analysis, the association between MS and serum SHBG levels persisted after adjusting for age, body mass index (BMI), smoking and drinking status, and serum TT (odds ratio [OR] 0.962, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] 0.954−0.969,  0.01). However, the association between serum TT level and the risk of MS was weak after adjusting for age, BMI, SHBG level, and smoking and drinking status (OR 0.981, 95% CI 0.960−1.007). Our study reveals that both serum TT and SHBG levels, but not serum FT, are inversely associated with the prevalence of MS and that serum SHBG is an independent and dominant risk factor for MS.
Asian Journal of Andrology (2015) 17, 991–995; doi: 10.4103/1008-682X.150845; published online: 7 April 2015
Keywords: metabolic syndrome; sex hormone‑binding globulin; testosterone

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Asian Journal of Andrology CN 31-1795/R ISSN 1008-682X  Copyright © 2023  Shanghai Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Sciences.  All rights reserved.