Fibroblast growth factor‐23 (FGF23) controls the homeostasis of both phosphate and vitamin D. Bone-derived FGF23 can suppress the transcription of 1α‐hydroxylase (1α(OH)ase) to reduce renal activation of vitamin D (1,25(OH)2D3). FGF23 can also activate the transcription of 24‐hydroxylase to enhance the renal degradation process of vitamin D. There is a counter-regulation for FGF23 and vitamin D; 1,25(OH)2D3 induces the skeletal synthesis and the release of FGF23, while FGF23 can suppress the production of 1,25(OH)2D3 by inhibiting 1α(OH)ase synthesis. Genetically ablating FGF23 activities in mice resulted in higher levels of renal 1α(OH)ase, which is also reflected in an increased level of serum 1,25(OH)2D3, while genetically ablating 1α(OH)ase activities in mice reduced the serum levels of FGF23. Similar feedback control of FGF23 and vitamin D is also detected in various human diseases. Further studies are required to understand the subcellular molecular regulation of FGF23 and vitamin D in health and disease.
Mohammed S Razzaque
Cihan Atila, Sophie Monnerat, Roland Bingisser, Martin Siegemund, Maurin Lampart, Marco Rueegg, Núria Zellweger, Stefan Osswald, Katharina Rentsch, Mirjam Christ-Crain, and Raphael Twerenbold
Hyponatremia in COVID-19 is often due to the syndrome of inadequate antidiuresis (SIAD), possibly mediated by interleukin-6 (IL-6)-induced non-osmotic arginine vasopressin (AVP) secretion. We hypothesized an inverse association between IL-6 and plasma sodium concentration, stronger in COVID-19 compared to other respiratory infections.
Secondary analysis of a prospective cohort study including patients with COVID-19 suspicion admitted to the Emergency Department, University Hospital of Basel, Switzerland, between March and July 2020.
We included patients with PCR-confirmed COVID-19 and patients with similar symptoms, further subclassified into bacterial and other viral respiratory infections. The primary objective was to investigate the association between plasma sodium and IL-6 levels.
A total of 500 patients were included, 184 (37%) with COVID-19, 92 (18%) with bacterial respiratory infections, and 224 (45%) with other viral respiratory infections. In all groups, median (IQR) IL-6 levels were significantly higher in hyponatremic compared to normonatremic patients (COVID-19: 43.4 (28.4, 59.8) vs 9.2 (2.8, 32.7) pg/mL, P < 0.001; bacterial: 122.1 (63.0, 282.0) vs 67.1 (24.9, 252.0) pg/mL, P < 0.05; viral: 14.1 (6.9, 84.7) vs 4.3 (2.1, 14.4) pg/mL, P < 0.05). IL-6 levels were negatively correlated with plasma sodium levels in COVID-19, whereas the correlation in bacterial and other viral infections was weaker (COVID-19: R = −0.48, P < 0.001; bacterial: R = −0.25, P = 0.05, viral: R = −0.27, P < 0.001).
IL-6 levels were inversely correlated with plasma sodium levels, with a stronger correlation in COVID-19 compared to bacterial and other viral infections. IL-6 might stimulate AVP secretion and lead to higher rates of hyponatremia due to the SIAD in these patients.
Fabyan Esberard de Lima Beltrão, Daniele Carvalhal de Almeida Beltrão, Giulia Carvalhal, Fabyo Napoleão de Lima Beltrão, Igor Motta de Aquino, Thaíse da Silva Brito, Barbara Costa Paulino, Elisa Aires, Diana Viegas, Fabio Hecht, Bruno Halpern, Liana Clebia De Morais Pordeus, Maria da Conceição Rodrigues Gonçalves, and Helton Estrela Ramos
The severity of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has been positively correlated with several comorbidities. The primary outcome of the study was to assess the relationship between the mortality and severity of COVID-19 and obesity classes according to BMI, visceral adipose tissue (VAT) area, s.c. adipose tissue area, muscle area (MA), and leptin levels.
In this prospective cohort study, 200 patients hospitalized with moderate-to-severe COVID-19 underwent an unenhanced CT of the thorax and laboratory tests, and leptin levels between June and August 2020 were obtained.
Our study included 200 patients (male 52%; mean age: 62 (49–74) years; obesity (BMI > 30): 51.5%)). Fifty-eight patients (23.5%) were admitted to the intensive care unit and 29 (14.5%) died. In multivariate logistic regression (corrected for leptin, sex, age, and serum biomarkers) and receiver operating characteristic curve analyses, high VAT > 150 cm2 (odds ratio (OR): 6.15; P < 0.002), MA < 92 cm2 (OR: 7.94; P < 0.005), and VAT/MA ratio > 2 (OR: 13.9; P < 0.0001) were independent risk factors for mortality. Indeed, the Kaplan–Meier curves showed that patients with MA < 92 cm2 and without obesity (BMI < 30) had a lower survival rate (hazard ratio between 3.89 and 9.66; P < 0.0006) than the other groups. Leptin levels were not related to mortality and severity.
This prospective study reports data on the largest number of hospitalized severe COVID-19 patients and pinpoints VAT area and MA calculated by CT as predictors of COVID-19 mortality.
Mark J C van Treijen, Catharina M Korse, Wieke H Verbeek, Margot E T Tesselaar, and Gerlof D Valk
Up to now, serial NETest measurements in individuals assessing the disease course of gastroenteropancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (GEPNETs) at long-term follow-up and treatment response were not studied.
The study was a longitudinal validation study of serial NETest measurements – a blood-based gene expression signature – in 132 patients with GEPNETs on therapy or watch-and-wait strategy.
Serial samples were collected during 46 (range: 6–71) months of follow-up. NETest scores were compared with Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors version 1.1-defined treatment response (e.g. no evidence of disease (NED), stable disease (SD) or progressive disease (PD)).
Consecutive NETest scores fluctuated substantially (range: 0–100) over time in individuals with SD (n = 28) and NED (n = 30). Follow-up samples were significantly higher in SD (samples 3–5) and NED subgroups (samples 2–5) compared with baseline results, without changes in imaging. In 82% of untreated patients with PD, consecutive NETest scores consistently remained high. In patients undergoing systemic treatment, the median pre-treatment NETest score in treatment-responders was 76.5 (n = 22) vs 33 (n = 12) in non-responders (P = 0.001). Patients with low pre-treatment scores had 21 months reduced progression-free survival (10 vs 31 months; P = 0.01). The accuracy of the NETest for treatment response prediction was 0.73 (P = 0.009).
In patients not undergoing treatment, consecutive low NETest scores are associated with indolent behavior. Patients who develop PD exhibit elevated scores. Elevated results have important predictive value for treatment responsiveness and could be used for individualizing decisions on systemic therapy. The clinical value of follow-up NETest scores for patients who choose to watch and wait requires further study.
Rafaella Sales de Freitas, Thiago F A França, and Sabine Pompeia
Kisspeptins play a crucial role during pubertal development, but little is known about how their peripheral concentrations relate to sexual maturation. This is partly due to the lack of non-invasive, quick, and reliable peripheral kisspeptin measures, which limit widespread testing. Here, we investigated the relationship between kisspeptin concentrations measured from midstream urine samples with 2-h retention periods and developmental markers (age, self-reported pubertal status, and saliva concentrations of testosterone and DHEA sulphate ) in 209 typically developing 9- to 15-year-old males and females. As a result of the study, we found marked sex differences. Kisspeptin concentrations were similar between sexes until around 12 years of age, but, thereafter, kisspeptin concentrations in females did not change significantly, whereas, in males, there was a clear positive correlation with developmental measures. Our results replicate previous findings regarding kisspeptin concentration changes across the pubertal transition obtained from blood samples, suggesting that measuring these peptides in urine has the potential for exploring kisspeptins’ peripheral effects and their associations with pubertal status.
Marcela Moraes Mendes, Patricia Borges Botelho, and Helena Ribeiro
Vitamin D enhances calcium absorption and bone mineralisation, promotes maintenance of muscle function, and is crucial for musculoskeletal health. Low vitamin D status triggers secondary hyperparathyroidism, increases bone loss, and leads to muscle weakness. The primary physiologic function of vitamin D and its metabolites is maintaining calcium homeostasis for metabolic functioning, signal transduction, and neuromuscular activity. A considerable amount of human evidence supports the well-recognised contribution of adequate serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations for bone homeostasis maintenance and prevention and treatment strategies for osteoporosis when combined with adequate calcium intake. This paper aimed to review the literature published, mainly in the last 20 years, on the effect of vitamin D and its supplementation for musculoskeletal health in order to identify the aspects that remain unclear or controversial and therefore require further investigation and debate. There is a clear need for consistent data to establish realistic and meaningful recommendations of vitamin D status that consider different population groups and locations. Moreover, there is still a lack of consensus on thresholds for vitamin D deficiency and optimal status as well as toxicity, optimal intake of vitamin D, vitamin D supplement alone as a strategy to prevent fractures and falls, recommended sun exposure at different latitudes and for different skin pigmentations, and the extra skeletal effects of vitamin D.
Agnieszka Adamska, Vitalii Ulychnyi, Katarzyna Siewko, Anna Popławska-Kita, Małgorzata Szelachowska, Marcin Adamski, Angelika Buczyńska, and Adam Jacek Krętowski
Cardiovascular risk factors could be present in mild adrenal autonomous cortisol secretion (MACS). However, the most frequent cardiovascular risk factors in MACS have not been established. The aim of the presseent study was to analyse the difference in cardiovascular risk factors in patients with MACS in comparison to those with non-functioning adrenal tumour (NFAT). A total of 295 patients with adrenal incidentaloma were included in this retrospective study. We divided our group into those who showed suppression in 1 mg overnight dexamethasone suppression test (DST) (NFAT) (serum cortisol level ≤1.8 μg/dL) and those who did not show suppression in the DST (MACS) (serum concentration of cortisol > 1.8 μg/dL and ≤5 μg/dL). In the studied groups, we analysed the presence of cardiovascular risk factors, such as obesity, prediabetes, type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), hypertension, hyperlipidaemia, chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular events. In our study, 18.9% of patients were defined as MACS. Importantly, T2DM was diagnosed in 41% of MACS vs 23% of NFAT (P < 0.01) and higher frequency of occurrence of hyperlipidaemia in NFAT (72.4%) vs MACS (53.6%) (P = 0.01) was observed. We did not observed differences in the frequency of obesity, hypertension, chronic kidney disease, prediabetes, atrial fibrillation, stroke, ST and non-ST elevation myocardial infarction and coronary angioplasty between patients with MACS and NFAT (all P > 0.05; respectively). In MACS, T2DM is more prevalent than in NFAT; hyperlipidaemia is more prevalent in NFAT. Accordingly, no differences were found in the incidence of obesity, hypertension, prediabetes, chronic kidney disease between studied groups as well as cardiovascular events.
J Gebauer, R Skinner, R Haupt, L Kremer, H van der Pal, G Michel, G T Armstrong, M M Hudson, L Hjorth, H Lehnert, and T Langer
Many long-term childhood cancer survivors suffer from treatment-related late effects, which may occur in any organ and include a wide spectrum of conditions. Long-term follow-up (LTFU) is recommended to facilitate early diagnosis and to ensure better health outcomes. Due to the heterogeneity of these sequelae, different specialists work together in the diagnosis and treatment of these conditions. Experts from both pediatric and internal medicine are involved in age-appropriate care by providing a transition process. Hence, LTFU of childhood cancer survivors is a prototypic example of multidisciplinary care for patients with complex needs treated in a specialized setting. International collaborations of healthcare professionals and scientists involved in LTFU of childhood cancer survivors, such as the International Guideline Harmonization Group, compile surveillance recommendations that can be clinically adopted all over the world. These global networks of clinicians and researchers make a joint effort to address gaps in knowledge, increase visibility and awareness of cancer survivorship and provide an excellent example of how progress in clinical care and scientific research may be achieved by international and multidisciplinary collaboration.
Ziting Liang, Mengge Yang, Changjuan Xu, Rong Zeng, and Liang Dong
This study aimed to investigate the effects and safety of metformin in patients with concurrent diabetes mellitus (DM) and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
PubMed, Embase, Web of Science, the China National Knowledge, and Cochrane Database were searched to find studies that examined the effects and safety of metformin in patients with concurrent DM and COPD. We conducted a meta-analysis with a risk ratio (RR) and assessed the quality of included studies and pooled evidence.
Eight studies were involved. Metformin was associated with lower risk of COPD-related hospitalizations (RR: 0.72, 95% CI: 0.53–0.98; I2= 89%) and all-cause mortality (RR: 0.60, 95% CI: 0.36–1.01, I2= 69%) in patients with concurrent DM and COPD, but did not increase the risk of hyperlactatemia (RR: 1.14, 95% CI: 0.92–1.41, I2 = 8%).
Metformin use is associated with lower risk of COPD-related hospitalizations and risk of all-cause mortality without increasing the risk of hyperlactatemia. Considerations should be given to conduct more high-quality randomized trials involving larger samples.