Birth weight and subclinical cardiovascular and renal damage in a population-based study (the STANISLAS cohort study)

Marilucy Lopez-Sublet, Thomas Merkling, Nicolas Girerd, Constance Xhaard, Adrien Flahault, Erwan Bozec, Celine Leroy, Tomona Fujikawa, Allan Arthur Vaag, Alexandre Mebazaa, Caroline Michaela Kistorp, Barbara Heude, Jean Marc Boivin, Faiez Zannad, Sandra Wagner, Patrick Rossignol*

*Corresponding author for this work


OBJECTIVE: Although preterm-born and low-birth-weight individuals have an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases in adulthood, little is known regarding early cardiovascular and renal damage (CVRD) or hypertension in adulthood. Our study investigated the association of birth weight with early CVRD markers as well as the heritability of birth weight in an initially healthy family-based cohort.

METHODS: This study was based on 1028 individuals from the familial longitudinal STANISLAS cohort (399 parents/629 children) initiated in 1993-1995, with a fourth examination conducted in 2011-2016. Analyses performed at the fourth visit included pulse-wave velocity, central pressure, ambulatory blood pressure, hypertension status, diastolic dysfunction/distensibility, left ventricular mass indexed (LVMI), carotid intima-media thickness and kidney damage. The family structure of the cohort allowed birth weight heritability estimation.

RESULTS: Mean (±SD) birth weight was 3.3 ± 0.6 kg. Heritability was moderate (42-44%). At the fourth visit, individuals were 37 years old (32.0-57.0), 56% were women and 13% had antihypertensive treatment. Birth weight was strongly and negatively associated with hypertension [odds ratio (OR) 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.61 (0.45-0.84)]. A nonlinear association was found with LVMI, participants with a birth weight greater than 3 kg having a higher LVMI. A positive association (β 95% CI 5.09 (1.8-8.38)] was also observed between birth weight and distensibility for adults with normal BMI. No associations were found with other CVRD.

CONCLUSION: In this middle-aged population, birth weight was strongly and negatively associated with hypertension, and positively associated with distensibility in adults with normal BMI and with LVMI for higher birth weights. No associations were found with other CVRD markers.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Hypertension
Issue number6
Pages (from-to)1040-1050
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2023


  • Adult
  • Birth Weight
  • Blood Pressure Monitoring, Ambulatory
  • Blood Pressure/physiology
  • Carotid Intima-Media Thickness
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Kidney
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Risk Factors


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