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Open access

Mohamed Asrih, Flore Sinturel, Richard Dubos, Idris Guessous, Zoltan Pataky, Charna Dibner, François R Jornayvaz, and Karim Gariani

Objective

Growth differentiation factor-15 (GDF15), a key metabolic regulator, is associated with obesity and diabetes in which sex-specific differences have been reported. Thus, we assessed whether GDF15 could be dependent on sex in diabetes and/or obesity groups.

Methods

We measured serum GDF15 levels by ELISA in eight lean women and men (n = 16), eight women and eight men having obesity (n = 16), eight women and eight men with type 2 diabetes (T2D, n = 16), and seven women and nine men with both diabetes and obesity (n = 16). Estimation of the difference in the means of each group was performed by two-way ANOVA. The interdependence of the different variates was addressed by multivariate analysis. Correlations between GDF15 levels and HOMA-IR, HbA1c, triglycerides, HDL, and LDL were explored by linear regression.

Results

Being a woman and having obesity alone or in combination with diabetes decreased GDF15 serum levels (β = −0.47, CI = −0.95, 0.00, P = 0.052; β = −0.45, CI = −0.94, 0.05, P= 0.075). Diabetes independently of metformin treatment and obesity were not predictive of low GDF15 levels (β = 0.10, CI = −0.36, 0.57, P = 0.7). Correlation analysis showed that HOMA-IR (r = 0.45, P = 0.008) and triglycerides (r = 0.41, P = 0.017) were positively correlated and HDL (r = −0.48, P = 0.005) was negatively correlated with GDF15 levels in men.

Conclusions/interpretation

GDF15 level was significantly different between men and women, as well as between the groups. Sex and group interaction revealed that being a woman and having obesity alone or in combination with diabetes decreased GDF15 levels.

Open access

Elena Valassi, Iacopo Chiodini, Richard A Feelders, Cornelie D Andela, Margueritta Abou-Hanna, Sarah Idres, and Antoine Tabarin

Background

Cushing’s syndrome (CS) is a rare condition of chronically elevated cortisol levels resulting in diverse comorbidities, many of which endure beyond successful treatment affecting the quality of life. Few data are available concerning patients’ experiences of diagnosis, care and persistent comorbidities.

Objective

To assess CS patients’ perspectives on the diagnostic and care journey to identify unmet therapeutic needs.

Methods

A 12-item questionnaire was circulated in 2019 by the World Association for Pituitary Organisations. A parallel, 13-item questionnaire assessing physician perceptions on CS patient experiences was performed.

Results

Three hundred twenty CS patients from 30 countries completed the questionnaire; 54% were aged 35–54 and 88% were female; 41% were in disease remission. The most burdensome symptom was obesity/weight gain (75%). For 49% of patients, time to diagnosis was over 2 years. Following treatment, 88.4% of patients reported ongoing symptoms including, fatigue (66.3%), muscle weakness (48.8%) and obesity/weight gain (41.9%). Comparisons with delay in diagnosis were significant for weight gain (P = 0.008) and decreased libido (P = 0.03). Forty physicians completed the parallel questionnaire which showed that generally, physicians poorly estimated the prevalence of comorbidities, particularly initial and persistent cognitive impairment. Only a minority of persistent comorbidities (occurrence in 1.3–66.3%; specialist treatment in 1.3–29.4%) were managed by specialists other than endocrinologists. 63% of patients were satisfied with treatment.

Conclusion

This study confirms the delay in diagnosing CS. The high prevalence of persistent comorbidities following remission and differences in perceptions of health between patients and physicians highlight a probable deficiency in effective multidisciplinary management for CS comorbidities.

Open access

Rongpeng Gong, Yuanyuan Liu, Gang Luo, Jiahui Yin, Zuomiao Xiao, and Tianyang Hu

Background

In recent decades, with the development of the global economy and the improvement of living standards, insulin resistance (IR) has become a common phenomenon. Current studies have shown that IR varies between races. Therefore, it is necessary to develop individual prediction models for each country. The purpose of this study was to develop a predictive model of IR applicable to the US population.

Method

In total, 11 cycles of data from the NHANES database were selected for this study. Of these, participants from 1999 to 2010 (n  =  14931) were used to establish the model, and participants from 2011 to 2020 (n  =  13,646) were used to validate the model. Univariate and multivariable logistic regression was used to analyze the factors associated with IR. Optimal subset regression was used to filter the best modeling variables. ROC curves, calibration curves, and decision curve analysis were used to determine the strengths and weaknesses of the model.

Results

After screening the variables by optimal subset regression, variables with covariance were excluded, and a total of seven factors (including HDL, LDL, ALB, GLB, GLU, BMI, and waist) were finally included to establish the prediction model. The AUCs were 0.851 and 0.857 in the training and validation sets, respectively, and the Brier value of the calibration curve was 0.153.

Conclusion

The optimal subset predictive model proposed in this study has a great performance in predicting IR, and the decision curve analysis shows that it has a high net clinical benefit, which can help clinicians and epidemiologists easily detect IR and take appropriate interventions as early as possible.

Open access

Ditte Sofie Dahl Sørensen, Jesper Krogh, Åse Krogh Rasmussen, and Mikkel Andreassen

Background

There is no consensus regarding markers of optimal treatment or timing between glucocorticoid intake and assessment of hormone levels in the follow-up of female 21-hydroxylase deficient patients.

Objective

To examine visit-to-visit repeatability in levels of adrenal hormones in adult female patients, to identify predictors of repeatability in hormone levels and to examine concordance between levels of different adrenal hormones.

Method

All patients with confirmed 21-hydroxylase deficiency treated with glucocorticoids, were included. The two most recent blood samples collected on a stable dose of glucocorticoid replacement were compared. Complete concordance was defined as all measured adrenal hormones either within, below or above normal range evaluated in a single-day measurement.

Results

Sixty-two patients, median age of 35 (range 18–74) years were included. All hormone levels showed moderate to excellent repeatability with an intraclass correlation coefficient between 0.80 and 0.99. Repeatability of hormone levels was not affected by the use of long-acting glucocorticoids or time of day for blood sample collection. The median difference in time between the two sample collections was 1.5 (range 0–7.5) h. Complete concordance between 17-hydroxyprogesterone, androstenedione, and testosterone was found in 21% of cases.

Conclusion

During everyday, clinical practice hormone levels in adult female patients with 21-hydroxylase deficiency showed a moderate to excellent repeatability, despite considerable variation in time of day for blood sample collection. We found no major predictors of hormone level variation. Future studies are needed to address the relationship between the timing of glucocorticoid intake vs adrenal hormone levels and clinical outcome in both adults and children.

Open access

Muriel Houang, Thao Nguyen-Khoa, Thibaut Eguether, Bettina Ribault, Séverine Brabant, Michel Polak, Irène Netchine, and Antonin Lamazière

Neonatal screening for congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH) faces many specific challenges. It must be done using a performant analytical approach that combines sensitivity and specificity to capture the potential causes of mortality during the first week of life, such as salt wasting and glucocorticoid deficiency. Here, we confirm that maternal inhaled corticosteroid intake during pregnancy is a possible cause of missed CAH diagnosis. Thanks to liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis, we were able to quantify endogenous steroid metabolites and also detect the presence of exogenous steroids in the dried blood spot of a newborn. Adding LC-MS/MS analysis as second-tier test, especially one that includes both 17-hydroxyprogesterone and 21-deoxycortisol measurements, would probably improve CAH diagnosis. In familial neonatal screening one could also look for maternal corticosteroid therapies that are hidden to prevent false-negative tests.

Open access

Paola Parra Ramírez, Patricia Martín Rojas-Marcos, Miguel Paja Fano, Marga González Boillos, Eider Pascual-Corrales, Ana García-Cano, Jorge Gabriel Ruiz-Sanchez, Almudena Vicente, Emilia Gómez-Hoyos, Rui Ferreira, Iñigo García Sanz, Mònica Recasens, Begoña Pla Peris, Rebeca Barahona San Millan, María José Picón César, Patricia Díaz Guardiola, Juan Jesús García González, Carolina Perdomo, Laura Manjón, Rogelio García-Centeno, Juan Carlos Percovich, Ángel Rebollo Román, Paola Gracia Gimeno, Cristina Robles Lázaro, Manuel Morales, Felicia Hanzu, and Marta Araujo-Castro

Objective

To compare the presentation and evolution of primary aldosteronism (PA) in the elderly (≥65 years) and young patients (<65 years).

Methods

A retrospective multicenter study was performed in 20 Spanish hospitals of PA patients in follow-up between 2018 and 2021.

Results

Three hundred fifty-two patients with PA <65 years and 88 patients ≥65 years were included. Older PA patients had a two-fold higher prevalence of type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia, and cerebrovascular disease, but these differences disappeared after adjusting for hypertension duration. At diagnosis, diastolic blood pressure was lower than in young patients (83.3 ± 11.54 vs 91.6 ± 14.46 mmHg, P < 0.0001). No differences in the rate of overall correct cannulation (56.5% vs 42.3%, P = 0.206) or the diagnosis of unilaterality (76.9% vs 62.5%, P = 0.325) in the adrenal venous sampling (AVS) was observed between the elderly and young groups. However, there was a lower proportion of PA patients who underwent adrenalectomy in the elderly group than in the younger group (22.7% (n  = 20) vs 37.5% (n  = 132), P = 0.009). Nevertheless, no differences in the rate of postsurgical biochemical (100% (n  = 14) vs 92.8% (n  = 90), P = 0.299) and hypertension cure (38.6% (n  = 51) vs 25.0% (n  = 5), P = 0.239) were observed between both groups.

Conclusion

Older patients with PA have a worse cardiometabolic profile than young patients with PA that it is related to a longer duration of hypertension. However, the results of the AVS, and adrenalectomy are similar in both groups. Therefore, the management of elderly patients with PA should be based not only on age, but rather on the overall medical, physical, social, and mental characteristics of the patients.

Open access

Melody Lok-Yi Chan, Sammy Wing-Ming Shiu, Ching-Lung Cheung, Anskar Yu-Hung Leung, and Kathryn Choon-Beng Tan

The inducible degrader of low-density lipoprotein receptor (IDOL) is an E3 ubiquitin ligase involved in the post-transcriptional regulation of LDL receptor (LDLR). Statins lower plasma LDL by activating transcription of hepatic LDLR expression, and we have determined whether statins modulate IDOL expression and influence LDLR protein abundance. IDOL expression in monocytes and serum IDOL level was determined in statin-treated familial hypercholesterolemia (FH) patients and compared with control subjects. Serum IDOL level was also evaluated in a group of untreated FH patients before and after the initiation of statin. The mechanism underlying the inhibitory effect of statin on IDOL expression was investigated in vitro. In statin-treated FH patients, serum IDOL level and its expression in monocytes was reduced compared with control (P < 0.05). In contrast, untreated FH patients had higher serum levels of IDOL and proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexintype 9 (PCSK9) than control (P < 0.05), and serum IDOL level decreased after statin therapy (P < 0.05) whereas an increase was observed in PCSK9 level (P < 0.01). In vitro, atorvastatin significantly decreased IDOL abundance in a dose-dependent manner in cultured macrophages and hepatocytes with a concomitant increase in LDLR expression. The transcription of IDOL was restored by adding either an LXR agonist T0901317 or oxysterol 22(R)-hydroxycholesterol, indicating that statin inhibited IDOL expression by reducing LXR activation. The LXR-IDOL-LDLR axis can be modulated by statins in vitro and in vivo. Statins inhibit IDOL expression by reducing LXR activation and upregulate LDLR, and statins exert the opposite effect on IDOL and PCSK9.

Open access

Eleftherios E Deiktakis, Eleftheria Ieronymaki, Peter Zarén, Agnes Hagsund, Elin Wirestrand, Johan Malm, Christos Tsatsanis, Ilpo T Huhtaniemi, Aleksander Giwercman, and Yvonne Lundberg Giwercman

Objective

During androgen ablation in prostate cancer by the standard gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist treatment, only luteinizing hormone (LH) is permanently suppressed while circulating follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) rebounds. We explored direct prostatic effects of add-back FSH, after androgen ablation with GnRH antagonist, permanently suppressing both gonadotropins.

Methods

The effects of recombinant human (rFSH) were examined in mice treated with vehicle (controls), GnRH antagonist degarelix (dgx), dgx + rFSH, dgx + flutamide, or dgx + rFSH + flutamide for 4 weeks. Prostates and testes size and expression of prostate-specific and/or androgen-responsive genes were measured. Additionally, 33 young men underwent dgx-treatment. Seventeen were supplemented with rFSH (weeks 1–5), and all with testosterone (weeks 4–5). Testosterone, gondotropins, prostate-specific antigen (PSA), and inhibin B were measured.

Results

In dgx and dgx + flutamide treated mice, prostate weight/body weight was 91% lower than in controls, but 41 and 11%, respectively, was regained by rFSH treatment (P = 0.02). The levels of seminal vesicle secretion 6, Pbsn, Nkx3.1, beta-microseminoprotein, and inhibin b were elevated in dgx + rFSH-treated animals compared with only dgx treated (all P < 0.05). In men, serum inhibin B rose after dgx treatment but was subsequently suppressed by testosterone. rFSH add-back had no effect on PSA levels.

Conclusions

These data provide novel evidence for the direct effects of FSH on prostate size and gene expression in chemically castrated mice. However, in chemically castrated men, FSH had no effect on PSA production. Whether FSH effects on the prostate in humans also require suppression of the residual adrenal-derived androgens and/or a longer period of rFSH stimulation, remains to be explored.

Open access

Marília D’Elboux Guimarães Brescia, Karine Candido Rodrigues, André Fernandes d’Alessandro, Wellington Alves Filho, Willemijn Y van der Plas, Schelto Kruijff, Sergio Samir Arap, Sergio Pereira de Almeida Toledo, Fábio Luiz de Menezes Montenegro, and Delmar Muniz Lourenço Jr

Background

Potential influences of parathyroidectomy (PTx) on the quality of life (QoL) in multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1-related primary hyperparathyroidism (HPT/MEN1) are unknown.

Method

Short Form 36 Health Survey Questionnaire was prospectively applied to 30 HPT/MEN1 patients submitted to PTx (20, subtotal; 10, total with autograft) before, 6 and 12 months after surgery. Parameters that were analyzed included QoL, age, HPT-related symptoms, general pain, comorbidities, biochemical/hormonal response, PTx type and parathyroid volume.

Results

Asymptomatic patients were younger (30 vs 38 years; P = 0.04) and presented higher QoL scores than symptomatic ones: Physical Component Summary score (PCS) 92.5 vs 61.2, P = 0.0051; Mental Component Summary score (MCS) 82.0 vs 56.0, P = 0.04. In both groups, QoL remained stable 1 year after PTx, independently of the number of comorbidities. Preoperative general pain was negatively correlated with PCS (r = −0.60, P = 0.0004) and MCS (r = −0.57, P = 0.0009). Also, moderate/intense pain was progressively (6/12 months) more frequent in cases developing hypoparathyroidism. The PTx type and hypoparathyroidism did not affect the QoL at 12 months although remnant parathyroid tissue volume did have a positive correlation (P = 0.0490; r = 0.3625) to PCS 12 months after surgery. Patients with one to two comorbidities had as pre-PTx PCS (P = 0.0015) as 12 months and post-PTx PCS (P = 0.0031) and MCS (P = 0.0365) better than patients with three to four comorbidities.

Conclusion

A variable QoL profile was underscored in HPT/MEN1 reflecting multiple factors associated with this complex disorder as comorbidities, advanced age at PTx and presence of preoperative symptoms or of general pain perception. Our data encourage the early indication of PTx in HPT/MEN1 by providing known metabolic benefits to target organs and avoiding potential negative impact on QoL.

Open access

Carole Morin, Keo-Morakort Benedetto, Agathe Deville, Laurent Milot, Aurélie Theillaumas, Valérie Hervieu, Mathieu Pioche, Gilles Poncet, Julien Forestier, Laurent François, Francoise Borson-Chazot, Mustapha Adham, Catherine Lombard-Bohas, and Thomas Walter

Purpose

To improve neuroendocrine neoplasm (NEN) management, the European Neuroendocrine Tumor Society (ENETS) recognised 62 Centers of Excellence (CoE). This retrospective study compares conformity of patients’ initial management within vs outside an ENETS CoE with clinical practice guidelines (CPGs).

Methods

Patients diagnosed with a NEN between August 2018 and July 2020 and presented in the Lyon-CoE Multidisciplinary Tumour Board (MDT) were included. Factors potentially associated with the conformity of initial management (work-up and first treatment) to CPG underwent univariate and multivariate analyses.

Results

Among the 615 included patients, 170 (27.6%) were initially managed in the CoE and 445 (72.4%) were only presented at the CoE-MDT. Patients in the CoE group more often had intestinal or pancreatic primaries, metastatic disease (61.8% vs 33%), hereditary syndrome, and a functioning tumour. Work-up conformity was 37.1% in the CoE (vs 29.9%, P  = 0.09); this was 95.8% for the first treatment (vs 88.7%, P  = 0.01). After multivariate analysis, CPG conformity was significantly higher for patients managed in the CoE, for younger patients, for those having a grade 1–2 tumour, and a genetic syndrome. Pancreatic and small intestinal (SI) NET surgeries performed in the CoE had a higher splenic preservation rate during left pancreatectomy, better detection of multiple tumours in SI surgeries, and higher number of resected lymph nodes.

Conclusions

Given the widespread observance of CPG, not all patients require management in the CoE. Referral should be considered for more complex cases such as metastatic diseases, G2 tumours, or carcinoid syndromes. Finally, we should encourage the centralization of NET surgery.