Neuregulin 4 (NRG4)–the hormone with clinical significance in gestational diabetes mellitus

Hira Attique, Saeeda Baig, Shahina Ishtiaque, Rehana Rehman, Syed Tousif Ahmed, Moazzam Ali Shahid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


This study aimed at determining the association between serum neuregulin 4 (NRG4) and insulin in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) and their correlation with other metabolic parameters. A cross-sectional study was conducted from June 2018 to February 2019 at Ziauddin University, Karachi. Pregnant women (n = 80), at 24–28 weeks of gestation, were recruited. Demographic data, anthropometric measurements and antenatal history were recorded. The fasting blood was drawn for testing fasting blood sugar (FBS), NRG4, insulin and lipid profile. The subjects were evaluated for glucose challenge test after 50 g glucose ingestion. NRG4 levels (1.00 ± 0.15) were found significantly high (p <.04) in healthy group compared to GDM (0.95 ± 0.11). In GDM females, high levels for FBS (p <.02) and cholesterol (p <.03) were observed. Homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) had direct weak association with NRG4, inverse relationship with cholesterol and LDL but significant association (p <.05) with insulin. Significantly high NRG4 in healthy females suggests its potential role in regulating insulin sensitivity. Impact StatementWhat is already known on this subject? Neuregulin 4 (NGR4) is a batokine which plays a potential role in regulating insulin sensitivity, maintaining energy and metabolic homeostasis. Due to its role in lipid and glucose homeostasis, some studies report its role in gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) but the results were controversial. What do the results of this study add? The study showed that NGR4 levels were significantly low in GDM subjects. Other metabolic factors especially insulin and homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) were found associated significantly (p < .05) with NGR4. What are the implications of these findings for clinical practice and/or further research? NGR4 can be a potential biomarker for gestational diabetes. Nevertheless, in order to confirm these findings, further studies, with bigger sample size are required to further ascertain the prospects of NRG4 as a potential biomarker for gestational diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1931-1936
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Pregnancy
  • adipose tissue
  • brown
  • diabetes
  • gestational


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