The primary purpose of this community-based longitudinal clinical research project is to investigate the evolving relationship between site-specific adiposity – including liver fat – with insulin resistance (IR) during puberty. Three cohorts of 20 middle-school aged girls at ages 11, 12, and 13 will participate in this research. Research procedures will include six tasks including MRI, serum labs, morphometric measurements, Tanner self-staging pubertal development survey, and a health information survey. Subjects will have the option of completing all research tasks on one or two days.
Significance: If successful, this study would:
1. Improve understanding of cross-sectional relationships between site-specific adiposity and liver fat at different stages of puberty.
2. Provide preliminary validation of new non-invasive MRI measures of site-specific adiposity and liver fat in pubertal subjects.
3. Provide the framework and resources for a mentored interdisciplinary patient-oriented research project performed by the PI and a highly promising junior investigator.
4. Provide preliminary data for a larger, definitive study to examine quantitative MRI measures of site-specific adiposity and liver fat and IR in pubertal children. Such a study could be powered to examine gender and ethnic/racial differences in ectopic fat deposition.