Association of allostatic load with all-cause and cancer mortality by race and body mass index in the regards cohort

Academic Article


  • Among 29,701 Black and White participants aged 45 years and older in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Difference in Stroke (REGARDS) study, allostatic load (AL) was defined as the sum score of established baseline risk-associated biomarkers for which participants exceeded a set cutoff point. Cox proportional hazard regression was utilized to determine the association of AL score with all-cause and cancer-specific mortality, with analyses stratified by body-mass index, age group, and race. At baseline, Blacks had a higher AL score compared with Whites (Black mean AL score: 2.42, SD: 1.50; White mean AL score: 1.99, SD: 1.39; p < 0.001). Over the follow-up period, there were 4622 all-cause and 1237 cancer-specific deaths observed. Every unit increase in baseline AL score was associated with a 24% higher risk of all-cause (HR: 1.24, 95% CI: 1.22, 1.27) and a 7% higher risk of cancer-specific mortality (HR: 1.07, 95% CI: 1.03, 1.12). The association of AL with overall-and cancer-specific mortality was similar among Blacks and Whites and across age-groups, however the risk of cancer-specific mortality was higher among normal BMI than overweight or obese participants. In conclusion, a higher baseline AL score was associated with increased risk of all-cause and cancer-specific mortality among both Black and White participants. Targeted interventions to patient groups with higher AL scores, regardless of race, may be beneficial as a strategy to reduce all-cause and cancer-specific mortality.
  • Published In

  • Cancers  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Akinyemiju T; Wilson LE; Deveaux A; Aslibekyan S; Cushman M; Gilchrist S; Safford M; Judd S; Howard V
  • Start Page

  • 1
  • End Page

  • 15
  • Volume

  • 12
  • Issue

  • 6