Acta Diabetologica

, Volume 51, Issue 6, pp 991–998 | Cite as

Serum ferritin, diabetes, diabetes control, and insulin resistance

Original Article



The present study aims to investigate the association between serum ferritin and diabetes, diabetes control, and insulin resistance (IR) and examine whether gender is a modifier for these associations in a community-based sample.


A cross-sectional survey of 8,235 participants was conducted in 2009. Serum ferritin, glucose, hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c), insulin, inflammatory markers, and lipid markers were measured. IR was estimated with a Homeostasis Model Assessment (HOMA-IR) equation. Multiple logistic and linear regression models were applied to evaluate these associations.


The numbers of diabetic patients and non-diabetic participants in the present study were 644 (7.8 %) and 7,591 (92.2 %). After adjusting for multiple confounders, the odds ratios (ORs) and 95 % confidence intervals (CIs) for diabetes were 1.48 (1.31–1.69) in men and 1.43 (1.24–1.65) in women for one-unit increase in log-transformed serum ferritin levels. Likewise, ORs (95 % CIs) for poor diabetes control (HbA1c ≥7.5 %) were 1.58 (1.21–2.05) and 1.37 (1.07–1.77) in men and women, respectively. As for HOMA-IR, the respective betas (P value) for one-unit increase in log-transformed serum ferritin were 0.07 (P < 0.0001) and 0.06 (P < 0.0001) in men and women.


In conclusion, elevated serum ferritin levels were associated with higher risks of diabetes, higher levels of HbA1c, and HOMA-IR independent of several confounders.


Ferritin Diabetes Insulin resistance Hemoglobin A1c 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Clinical Epidemiology, School of Public HealthFudan UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety, School of Public HealthFudan UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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