Background: High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) levels are lower in Japanese compared with Western subjects. Since it is uncertain whether hsCRP is a potent predictor of mortality at low CRP concentrations, the present study examined associations with all-cause and cause-specific mortality in a large population of Japanese. Materials and Methods: Subjects were 4,737 men and 6,343 women aged 49-76 years participating in the baseline survey of an ongoing cohort study of lifestyle-related diseases between February 2004 and July 2006. Hazard ratios for all-cause and cause-specific mortality associated with hsCRP levels were estimated using Cox proportional hazards regression. Results: A total of 436 all-cause deaths occurred during a median followup of 8 years. The main cause of death was cancer. In men, hsCRP levels were positively associated with the risk of all-cause mortality as well as deaths from cancer and cardiovascular disease (CVD). All-cause mortality hazards for the 2nd (0.34-0.84 mg/L) and the 3rd (≥ 0.85 mg/L) tertiles of hsCRP were 1.27 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.93-1.73) and 1.75 (1.30-2.37), respectively (p for trend=0.001). In women, increased risk of allcause and cause-specific mortality associated with elevated hsCRP levels was observed, but the associations were not statistically significant. Conclusions: HsCRP may be an independent predictor of all-cause, cancer and CVD mortality in apparently healthy Japanese men, but not women. The differential effect of hsCRP in predicting mortality risk by sex warrants further investigation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Cancer Research