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Open access

Hanna Karhapää, Siru Mäkelä, Hanna Laurén, Marjut Jaakkola, Camilla Schalin-Jäntti, and Micaela Hernberg

Objective: Immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICI) can cause endocrine adverse events. However, endocrine AEs could be related to better treatment outcomes. Our aim was to investigate whether this holds true in a real-world setting of metastatic melanoma patients.

Design: A retrospective single-institution study.

Methods: We included 140 consecutive metastatic melanoma patients treated with ICI between January 2012 and May 2019. We assessed endocrine toxicity and best possible treatment outcomes from electronic patient records, including laboratory parameters, and radiological images.

Results: Of the treated patients, 21 patients (15%) were treated with ipilimumab, 46 (33%) with nivolumab, 67 (48%) with pembrolizumab, and six (4%) with combination therapy (ipilimumab + nivolumab). Endocrine AEs appeared in 29% (41/140) patients. Three patients had two different endocrine AEs. Thyroid disorders were the most common: 26% (36/140), followed by hypophysitis: 4% (5/140). Three subjects (2%, 3/140) were diagnosed with autoimmune diabetes. Three patients had to terminate treatment due to endocrine toxicity. Radiological manifestations of endocrine AEs were found in 16 patients (39%, 16/41). Endocrine toxicity was associated with significantly better treatment outcomes. Median progression-free survival (8.1 months, range 5.1 – 11.1 months vs. 2.7 months, range 2.4 – 3.0 months, P < 0.001), and median overall survival (47.5 months, range 15.5 – 79.5 months vs. 23.7 months, range 15.3 – 32.1 months, P = 0.035) were longer for patients experiencing endocrine AEs.

Conclusions: The higher number of endocrine AEs suggest regular laboratory monitoring aids in AE detection. Endocrine AEs in metastatic melanoma may correlate with better treatment outcomes.

Open access

Chengnan Guo, Yixi Xu, Yange Ma, Xin Xu, Fang Peng, Hui-hui Li, Dongzhen Jin, Shu-zhen Zhao, Zhezheng Xia, Mengyuan Lai, Mingzhu Che, Ruogu Huang, Yanan Wang, Depeng Jiang, Chao Zheng, and Guangyun Mao

Although previous studies demonstrate that trehalose can help maintain glucose homeostasis in healthy humans, its role and joint effect with glutamate on diabetic retinopathy (DR) remain unclear. We aimed to comprehensively quantify the associations of trehalose and glutamate with DR. This study included 69 pairs of DR and matched type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients. Serum trehalose and glutamate were determined via ultra-performance liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry system. Covariates were collected by a standardized questionnaire, clinical examinations and laboratory assessments. Individual and joint association of trehalose and glutamate with DR were quantified by multiple conditional logistic regression models. The adjusted odds of DR averagely decreased by 86% [odds ratio (OR): 0.14; 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.06,0.33] with per interquartile range increase of trehalose. Comparing with the lowest quartile, adjusted OR (95% CI) were 0.20 (0.05,0.83), 0.14 (0.03,0.63) and 0.01 (<0.01,0.05) for participants in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th quartiles of trehalose, respectively. In addition, as compared to their counterparts, T2D patients with lower trehalose (<median) and higher glutamate (≥ median) had the highest odds of DR (OR: 36.81; 95% CI: 6.75, 200.61). Apparent super-multiplicative effect of trehalose and glutamate on DR was observed, whereas relative excess risk due to interaction (RERI) was not significant. The study suggests that trehalose is beneficial to inhibit the occurrence of DR and synergistically decreases the risk of DR with reduced glutamate. Our findings also provide new insights into the mechanisms of DR and further longitudinal studies are required to confirm these findings.

Open access

Wenjun Long, Tuo Zhou, Xiuping Xuan, Qiuli Cao, Zuojie Luo, Yingfen Qin, Qin Ning, Xiaoping Luo, and Xuemei Xie

Intrauterine growth restriction combined with postnatal accelerated growth (CG-IUGR) could lead to long-term detrimental metabolic outcomes characterized by insulin resistance. As an indispensable co-receptor of Wnt signaling, LRP6 plays a critical role in the susceptibility of metabolic disorders. However, whether LRP6 is involved in the metabolic programing is still unknown. We hypothesized that CG-IUGR programed impaired insulin sensitivity through the impaired LRP6-mediated Wnt signaling in skeletal muscle. A CG-IUGR rat model was employed. The transcriptional and translational alterations of the components of the Wnt and the insulin signaling in the skeletal muscle of the male CG-IUGR rats were determined. The role of LRP6 on the insulin signaling was evaluated by shRNA knockdown or Wnt3a stimulation of LRP6. Compared with controls, the male CG-IUGR rats showed an insulin-resistant phenotype, with impaired insulin signaling and decreased expression of LRP6/β-catenin in skeletal muscle. LRP6 knockdown led to reduced expression of the IR-β/IRS-1 in C2C12 cell line, while Wnt3a-mediated LRP6 expression increased the expression of IRS-1 and IGF-1R but not IR-β in the primary muscle cells of male CG-IUGR rats. The impaired LRP6/β-catenin/IGF-1R/IRS-1 signaling is probably one of the critical mechanisms underlying the programed impaired insulin sensitivity in male CG-IUGR.

Open access

Josephina G Kuiper, Aline C Fenneman, Anne H van der Spek, Elena Rampanelli, Max Nieuwdorp, Myrthe P P van Herk-Sukel, Valery E P P Lemmens, Ernst J Kuipers, Ron M C Herings, and Eric Fliers


Whether an association between oral levothyroxine use, leading to supraphysiological exposure of the colon to thyroid hormones, and risk of colorectal cancer exists in humans is unclear. We therefore aimed to assess whether the use of levothyroxine is associated with a reduced risk of colorectal cancer in a linked cohort of pharmacy and cancer data.


Population-based matched case–control study.


A total of 28,121 patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer between 1998 and 2014 were matched to 106,086 controls. Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the association between levothyroxine use and occurrence of colorectal cancer, adjusted for potential confounders. Results were stratified by gender, age, tumour subtype, and staging, as well as treatment duration and dosing.


A total of 1066 colorectal cancer patients (4%) and 4024 (4%) controls had used levothyroxine at any point before index date (adjusted odds ratio 0.95 (0.88–1.01)). Long-term use of levothyroxine was seen in 323 (30%) colorectal cancer patients and 1111 (28%) controls (adjusted odds ratio 1.00 (0.88–1.13)). Stratification by tumour subsite showed a borderline significant risk reduction of rectal cancer, while this was not seen for proximal colon cancer or distal colon cancer. There was no relationship with treatment duration or with levothyroxine dose.


In this study, no reduced risk of colorectal cancer was seen in levothyroxine users. When stratifying by tumour subsite, a borderline significant risk reduction of rectal cancer was found and may warrant further research.

Open access

Georgios Kontogeorgos, Zoi Mamasoula, Emily Krantz, Penelope Trimpou, Kerstin Landin-Wilhelmsen, and Christine M Laine


Hypoparathyroidism (HypoPT) is a rare endocrine disorder in which insufficient levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH) lead to low serum calcium (S-Ca) levels and muscular cramps. The aim was to study the health-related quality of life (HRQoL) and comorbidities in patients with HypoPT compared with the general population and to estimate the need of treatment with PTH analog.


Patients with HypoPT were identified and compared with a population sample. Short Form-36 (SF-36) and EuroQol-5 Dimensions Visual Analogue Scale questionnaires were used. All patients were followed up at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital outpatient clinic.


From the medical records between 2007 and 2020, 203 patients with HypoPT were identified and compared with a population sample (n = 414) from the World Health Organization’s (WHO) MONICA project, Gothenburg, Sweden. Of the 203 patients who met the diagnostic criteria, 164 were alive and 65% answered the HRQoL questionnaires.


Patients with HypoPT, 80% postsurgical, and controls had similar age (60 years) and sex distribution (80% women). Patients had lower SF-36 summary component scores for physical (40.0 (interquartile range (IQR): 21) vs 51.2 (IQR: 14.6); P < 0.001) and mental (43.1 (IQR:17.4) vs 56.1(IQR:13.3); P < 0.001) well-being, irrespective of etiology or calcium levels. Individuals with HypoPT had more medications and lower renal function but not higher mortality than controls. Low HRQoL together with low calcium was present in 23% of individuals with HypoPT.


HRQoL was markedly lower in patients with HypoPT than in controls and independent of S-Ca levels. Treatment with PTH analog could be considered at least among patients with both low HRQoL and low calcium levels.

Open access

Sandeep Kumar Parvathareddy, Abdul K Siraj, Zeeshan Qadri, Saeeda O. Ahmed, Felisa DeVera, Saif Al-Sobhi, Fouad Al-Dayel, and Khawla S Al-Kuraya

Objective: Recently, lymph node ratio (LNR) has emerged as an alternative to American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) N stage, with superior prognostic value. The utility of LNR in Middle Eastern Papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) remains unknown. Therefore, we retrospectively analyzed a large cohort of 1407 PTC patients for clinico-pathological associations of LNR.

Methods: Receiver operating characteristics (ROC) curve was used to determine the cut-off for LNR. We also performed multivariate logistic regression analysis to determine whether LNR or AJCC N stage was superior in predicting recurrence in PTC.

Results: Based on ROC curve analysis, a cut-off of 0.15 was chosen for LNR. High LNR was significantly associated with adverse clinico-pathological characteristics such as male sex, extrathyroidal extension, lymphovascular invasion, multifocality, bilateral tumors, T4 tumors, lateral lymph node (N1b) involvement, distant metastasis, advanced tumor stage, ATA high risk category and tumor recurrence. On multivariate analysis, we found that LNR was a better predictor of tumor recurrence than AJCC N stage (Odds ratio: 1.96 vs. 1.30; p value: 0.0184 vs. 0.3831). We also found that LNR combined with TNM stage and ATA risk category improved the prediction of recurrence-free survival, compared to TNM stage or ATA risk category alone.

Conclusions: The present study suggests LNR is an independent predictor of recurrence in Middle Eastern PTC. Integration of LNR with 8th edition AJCC TNM staging system and ATA risk stratification will improve the accuracy to predict recurrence in Middle Eastern PTC and help in tailoring treatment and surveillance strategies in these patients.

Open access

Josi Vidart, Paula Jaskulski, Ana Laura Kunzler, Rafael Aguiar Marschner, André Ferreira de Azeredo da Silva, and Simone Magagnin Wajner

We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to comprehensively determine the prevalence and the prognostic role of nonthyroidal illness syndrome (NTIS) in critically ill patients. We included studies that assessed thyroid function by measuring the serum thyroid hormone level and in-hospital mortality in adult septic patients. Reviews, case reports, editorials, letters, animal studies, duplicate studies, and studies with irrelevant populations and inappropriate controls were excluded. A total of 6869 patients in 25 studies were included. The median prevalence rate of NTIS was 58% (IQR 33.2-63.7). In univariate analysis, triiodothyronine (T3) and free T3 (FT3) levels in non-survivors were relatively lower than that of survivors (8 studies for T3; standardized mean difference (SMD) 1.16; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.41–1.92; I2 = 97%; P < 0.01). Free thyroxine (FT4) levels in non-survivors were also lower than that of survivors (12 studies; SMD 0.54; 95% CI, 0.31–0.78; I2 = 83%; P < 0.01). There were no statistically significant differences in TSH levels between non-survivors and survivors. NTIS was independently associated with increased risk of mortality in critically ill patients (OR = 2.21, 95% CI 1.64.- 2.97, I2 = 65% p < 0.01) The results favor the concept that decreased thyroid function might be associated with a worse outcome in critically ill patients. Hence, the measurement of TH could provide prognostic information on mortality in adult patients admitted to ICU.

Open access

Lauren R. Cirrincione, Bridgit O. Crews, Jane A. Dickerson, Matthew D. Krasowski, Jessica Rongitsch, Katherine L. Imborek, Zil Goldstein, and Dina N. Greene

Objectives: Recently, an estradiol immunoassay manufacturer (Beckman Coulter, USA) issued an “Important Product Notice” alerting clinical laboratories their assay (Access Sensitive Estradiol) was not indicated for patients undergoing exogenous estradiol treatment. The objective of this analysis was to evaluate immunoassay bias relative to liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) in transgender women and to examine the influence of unconjugated estrone on measurements.

Design: Cross sectional secondary analysis.

Methods: Estradiol concentrations from 89 transgender women were determined by three immunoassays (Access Sensitive Estradiol [‘New BC’] and Access Estradiol assays [‘Old BC’], Beckman Coulter; Estradiol III assay [‘Roche’], Roche Diagnostics) and LC-MS/MS. Bias was evaluated with and without adjustment for estrone concentrations. The number of participants who shifted between three estradiol concentration ranges for each immunoassay versus LC-MS/MS (>300 pg/mL, 70-300 pg/mL, and <70 pg/mL) was calculated.

Results: The New BC assay had the largest magnitude overall bias (median: -34%) and was -40%, -22%, and -10%, among participants receiving tablet, patch, or injection preparations, respectively. Overall bias was -12% and +17% for the Roche and Old BC assays, respectively. When measured with the New BC assay, 18 participants shifted to a lower estradiol concentration range (versus 9 and 10 participants based on Roche or Old BC assays, respectively). Adjustment for estrone did not minimize bias.

Conclusions: Immunoassay measurement of estradiol in transgender women may lead to falsely decreased concentrations that have the potential to affect management. A multi-disciplinary health care approach is needed to ensure appropriate analytical methods are available.

Open access

Ja Hye Kim, Yunha Choi, Soojin Hwang, Gu-Hwan Kim, Han-Wook Yoo, and Jin-Ho Choi

Objective: Heterozygous CHD7 mutations cause a broad spectrum of clinical phenotypes ranging from typical CHARGE syndrome to self-limited delayed puberty. This study aimed to investigate the clinical characteristics of endocrine dysfunction in patients with CHD7 mutations.

Methods: The clinical features and endocrine findings from 30 patients with CHD7 variants were retrospectively reviewed. A diagnosis of CHARGE syndrome was based on the Verloes diagnostic criteria.

Results: Seventeen patients fulfilled the criteria for typical CHARGE syndrome, one patient for partial/incomplete CHARGE, and the remaining 11 patients had atypical CHARGE syndrome. One patient was diagnosed with Kallmann syndrome and unilateral deafness. The most frequently observed features were inner ear anomalies (80.0%), intellectual disability (76.7%), and external ear anomalies (73.3%). The mean height and weight SDSs at diagnosis were -2.6 ± 1.3 and -2.2 ± 1.8, respectively. Short stature was apparent in 18 patients (60%), and one patient was diagnosed with growth hormone deficiency. Seventeen males showed genital hypoplasia, including micropenis, cryptorchidism, or both. Seven patients after pubertal age had hypogonadotropic hypogonadism with hyposmia/anosmia and olfactory bulb hypoplasia. Truncating CHD7 mutations were the most common (n = 22), followed by missense variants (n = 3), splice-site variants (n = 2), and large deletion (n = 2).

Conclusions: A diverse phenotypic spectrum was observed in patients with CHD7 variants, and endocrine defects such as short stature and delayed puberty occurred in most patients. Endocrine evaluation, especially for growth and pubertal impairment, should be performed during diagnosis and follow-up to improve the patient’s quality of life.

Open access

Jean-Philippe Bertocchio, Natalie Grosset, Lionel Groussin, Peter Kamenicky, Fabrice Larceneux, Anne Lienhardt-Roussie, Agnès Linglart, Gérard Maruani, Eric Mirallie, François Pattou, Riyad N.H. Seervai, Coralie Sido, Caroline Silve, Aurélie Vilfaillot, Antoine Tabarin, Marie-Christine Vantyghem, and Pascal Houillier

Context: Recent guidelines have provided recommendations for the care of patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism. Very little is known about actual physicians’ practices or their adherence to such guidelines.

Objective: To describe the practice patterns and their compliance with international guidelines.

Design: Cohort studies: Épi-Hypo (118 Physicians and 107 patients, from 09/2016 to 12/2019) and ePatients (110 patients, November 2019).

Methods: Internet-based cohorts involving all settings at a nationwide level (France). Participants were i) physicians treating patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism and patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism either participating in the ii) Épi-Hypo study (Épi-Hypo 2019 patients) or iii) Hypoparathyroidism France, the national representative association (ePatients).

Results: The physicians’ specialties were mainly endocrinology (61%), nephrology (28%), family medicine (2.5%), pediatrics (2.5%), rheumatology (2%) or miscellaneous (4%). Forty-five percent were practicing in public universities. The median number of pharmaceutical drug classes prescribed was 3 per patient. The combination of active vitamin D and calcium salt was given to 59% and 58% of ePatients and Épi-Hypo 2019 patients, respectively. Eighty-five percent of ePatients and 87% of physicians reported monitoring plasma calcium concentrations at a steady state at least twice a year. In 32% and 26% of cases, respectively, ePatients and physicians reported being fully in accordance with international guidelines that recommend targeting symptoms, plasma calcium and phosphate values, and urine calcium excretion.

Conclusions: The care of patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism involves physicians with very different practices, so guidelines should include and target not only endocrinologists. Full adherence to the guidelines is low in France.