BACKGROUND: Selenoprotein P (SeP) has recently been reported as a novel hepatokine that regulates insulin resistance and systemic energy metabolism in rodents and humans. We explored the associations among SeP, visceral obesity, and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). METHODS: We examined serum SeP concentrations in subjects with increased visceral fat area (VFA) or liver fat accumulation measured with computed tomography. Our study subjects included 120 nondiabetic individuals selected from participants of the Korean Sarcopenic Obesity Study. In addition, we evaluated the relationship between SeP and cardiometabolic risk factors, including homeostasis model of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP), adiponectin values, and brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV). RESULTS: Subjects with NAFLD showed increased levels of HOMA-IR, hsCRP, VFA, and several components of metabolic syndrome and decreased levels of adiponectin and high density lipoprotein cholesterol than those of controls. Serum SeP levels were positively correlated with VFA, hsCRP, and baPWV and negatively correlated with the liver attenuation index. Not only subjects with visceral obesity but also those with NAFLD exhibited significantly increased SeP levels (P<0.001). In multiple logistic regression analysis, the subjects in the highest SeP tertile showed a higher risk for NAFLD than those in the lowest SeP tertile, even after adjusting for potential confounding factors (odds ratio, 7.48; 95% confidence interval, 1.72 to 32.60; P=0.007). CONCLUSION: Circulating SeP levels were increased in subjects with NAFLD as well as in those with visceral obesity and may be a novel biomarker for NAFLD.