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Open access

Feifei Cheng, Noel Yat Hey Ng, Claudia Ha Ting Tam, Yuying Zhang, Cadmon King Poo Lim, Guozhi Jiang, Alex Chi Wai Ng, Tiffany Tse Ling Yau, Lai Ping Cheung, Aimin Xu, Juliana C N Chan, and Ronald C W Ma

Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. FGF19, FGF21 and lipocalin-2 have emerged as important markers of metabolic risk. This study aims to compare the levels of FGF19, FGF21 and lipocalin-2 between subjects with or without PCOS, and to investigate the relationship between proteins and diabetes progression. In this nested case–control cohort study, 128 Chinese PCOS women and 128 controls were recruited and followed-up. All subjects underwent the oral glucose tolerance test for the evaluation of glycaemic status. Baseline serum protein levels were measured using ELISA. Compared with controls, PCOS subjects had higher levels of FGF19 (P < 0.001) and FGF21 (P = 0.022), but had lower lipocalin-2 (P < 0.001). In total, 20.8% of PCOS and 9.2% of controls developed diabetes over a mean duration of 10.4 ± 1.2 and 11.3 ± 0.5 years, respectively. Logistic regression analyses suggested FGF19 was positively associated with diabetes progression in controls, after adjusting for age, follow-up duration, waist and fasting glucose (P = 0.026, odds ratio (OR) (95% CI): 7.4 (1.3–43.6)), and the positive relationship between FGF21 and diabetes progression in controls was attenuated by adjusting for age and follow-up duration (P = 0.183). Lipocalin-2 was positively correlated with diabetes progression in PCOS group (P = 0.026, OR (95% CI)): 2.5 (1.1–5.6)); however, this became attenuated after adjusting for waist and fasting glucose (P = 0.081). In conclusion, there is differential expression of FGF19, FGF21, and lipocalin-2 in PCOS. The serum level of FGF19, and FGF21 is associated with diabetes progression in women without PCOS, while lipocalin-2 was related to diabetes progression in PCOS women.

Open access

Liza Haqq, James McFarlane, Gudrun Dieberg, and Neil Smart

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) affects 18–22% of women at reproductive age. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis evaluating the expected benefits of lifestyle (exercise plus diet) interventions on the reproductive endocrine profile in women with PCOS. Potential studies were identified by systematically searching PubMed, CINAHL and the Cochrane Controlled Trials Registry (1966–April 30, 2013) systematically using key concepts of PCOS. Significant improvements were seen in women receiving lifestyle intervention vs usual care in follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) levels, mean difference (MD) 0.39 IU/l (95% CI 0.09 to 0.70, P=0.01), sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) levels, MD 2.37 nmol/l (95% CI 1.27 to 3.47, P<0.0001), total testosterone levels, MD −0.13 nmol/l (95% CI −0.22 to −0.03, P=0.008), androstenedione levels, MD −0.09 ng/dl (95% CI −0.15 to −0.03, P=0.005), free androgen index (FAI) levels, MD −1.64 (95% CI −2.94 to −0.35, P=0.01) and Ferriman–Gallwey (FG) score, MD −1.01 (95% CI −1.54 to −0.48, P=0.0002). Significant improvements were also observed in women who received exercise-alone intervention vs usual care in FSH levels, MD 0.42 IU/l (95% CI 0.11 to 0.73, P=0.009), SHBG levels, MD 3.42 nmol/l (95% CI 0.11 to 6.73, P=0.04), total testosterone levels, MD −0.16 nmol/l (95% CI −0.29 to −0.04, P=0.01), androstenedione levels, MD −0.09 ng/dl (95% CI −0.16 to −0.03, P=0.004) and FG score, MD −1.13 (95% CI −1.88 to −0.38, P=0.003). Our analyses suggest that lifestyle (diet and exercise) intervention improves levels of FSH, SHBG, total testosterone, androstenedione and FAI, and FG score in women with PCOS.

Open access

M Jensterle, A Podbregar, K Goricar, N Gregoric, and A Janez

Lifestyle measures (LSMs) should be the first-line approach offered for obesity-related functional hypogonadism (FH). When LSMs fail, the role of testosterone replacement treatment (TRT) is unclear. GLP1 receptor agonist liraglutide is linked to progressive and sustained weight loss. A potential direct impact of GLP1 on hypothalamus-pituitary-testicular (HPT) axis was reported in animal models. We aimed to compare the effects of liraglutide and TRT on FH in obese men that had been poor responders to LSM, by means of reversal of FH and weight reduction. We designed a 16-week prospective randomized open-label study with 30 men (aged 46.5 ± 10.9 years, BMI 41.2 ± 8.4 kg/m2, mean ± s.d.) that were randomized to liraglutide 3.0 mg QD (LIRA) or 50 mg of 1% transdermal gel QD (TRT). Sexual function and anthropometric measures were assessed. Fasting blood was drawn for determination of endocrine and metabolic parameters followed by OGTT. Model-derived parameters including HOMAIR and calculated free testosterone (cFT) were calculated. Total testosterone significantly increased in both arms (+5.9 ± 7.2 in TRT vs +2.6 ± 3.5 nmol/L in LIRA) and led to improved sexual function. LIRA resulted in a significant increase of luteinizing hormone (LH) and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) (P < 0.001 for between-treatment effect). Subjects treated with LIRA lost on average 7.9 ± 3.8  kg compared with a 0.9 ± 4.5  kg loss in TRT (P < 0.001). Metabolic syndrome was resolved in two patients in LIRA and in no subjects in TRT. Liraglutide was superior to TRT in improving an overall health benefit in men with obesity-associated FH after LSM failed.

Open access

Tao Mei, Jianhe Zhang, Liangfeng Wei, Xingfeng Qi, Yiming Ma, Xianhua Liu, Shaohua Chen, Songyuan Li, Jianwu Wu, and Shousen Wang

Tumor cells require large amounts of energy to sustain growth. Through the mediated transport of glucose transporters, the uptake and utilization of glucose by tumor cells are significantly enhanced in the hypoxic microenvironment. Pituitary adenomas are benign tumors with high-energy metabolisms. We aimed to investigate the role of expression of glucose transporter 3 (GLUT3) and glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) in pituitary adenomas, including effects on size, cystic change and hormone type. Pituitary adenomas from 203 patients were collected from January 2013 to April 2017, and immunohistochemical analysis was used to detect the expression of GLUT3 and GLUT1 in tumor specimens. GLUT3-positive expression in the cystic change group was higher than that in the non-cystic change group (P = 0.018). Proportions of GLUT3-positive staining of microadenomas, macroadenomas, and giant adenomas were 22.7 (5/22), 50.4 (66/131) and 54.0% (27/50), respectively (P = 0.022). In cases of prolactin adenoma, GLUT3-positive staining was predominant in cell membranes (P = 0.000006), while in cases of follicle-stimulating hormone or luteotropic hormone adenoma, we found mainly paranuclear dot-like GLUT3 staining (P = 0.025). In other hormonal adenomas, GLUT3 was only partially expressed, and the intensity of cell membrane or paranuclear punctate staining was weak. In contrast to GLUT3, GLUT1 expression was not associated with pituitary adenomas. Thus, our results indicate that the expression of GLUT3 in pituitary adenomas is closely related to cystic change and hormonal type. This study is the first to report a unique paranuclear dot-like GLUT3 staining pattern in pituitary adenomas.

Open access

M von Wolff, C T Nakas, M Tobler, T M Merz, M P Hilty, J D Veldhuis, A R Huber, and J Pichler Hefti

Humans cannot live at very high altitude for reasons, which are not completely understood. Since these reasons are not restricted to cardiorespiratory changes alone, changes in the endocrine system might also be involved. Therefore, hormonal changes during prolonged hypobaric hypoxia were comprehensively assessed to determine effects of altitude and hypoxia on stress, thyroid and gonadal hypothalamus–pituitary hormone axes. Twenty-one male and 19 female participants were examined repetitively during a high-altitude expedition. Cortisol, prolactin, thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), fT4 and fT3 and in males follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH) and total testosterone were analysed as well as parameters of hypoxemia, such as SaO2 and paO2 at 550 m (baseline) (n = 40), during ascent at 4844 m (n = 38), 6022 m (n = 31) and 7050 m (n = 13), at 4844 m (n = 29) after acclimatization and after the expedition (n = 38). Correlation analysis of hormone concentrations with oxygen parameters and with altitude revealed statistical association in most cases only with altitude. Adrenal, thyroid and gonadal axes were affected by increasing altitude. Adrenal axis and prolactin were first supressed at 4844 m and then activated with increasing altitude; thyroid and gonadal axes were directly activated or suppressed respectively with increasing altitude. Acclimatisation at 4844 m led to normalization of adrenal and gonadal but not of thyroid axes. In conclusion, acclimatization partly leads to a normalization of the adrenal, thyroid and gonadal axes at around 5000 m. However, at higher altitude, endocrine dysregulation is pronounced and might contribute to the physical degradation found at high altitude.

Open access

M Boering, P R van Dijk, S J J Logtenberg, K H Groenier, B H R Wolffenbuttel, R O B Gans, N Kleefstra, and H J G Bilo

Aims

Elevated sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) concentrations have been described in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), probably due to low portal insulin concentrations. We aimed to investigate whether the route of insulin administration, continuous intraperitoneal insulin infusion (CIPII), or subcutaneous (SC), influences SHBG concentrations among T1DM patients.

Methods

Post hoc analysis of SHBG in samples derived from a randomized, open-labeled crossover trial was carried out in 20 T1DM patients: 50% males, mean age 43 (±13) years, diabetes duration 23 (±11) years, and hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) 8.7 (±1.1) (72 (±12) mmol/mol). As secondary outcomes, testosterone, 17-β-estradiol, luteinizing hormone (LH), and follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) were analyzed.

Results

Estimated mean change in SHBG was −10.3nmol/L (95% CI: −17.4, −3.2) during CIPII and 3.7nmol/L (95% CI: −12.0, 4.6) during SC insulin treatment. Taking the effect of treatment order into account, the difference in SHBG between therapies was −6.6nmol/L (95% CI: −17.5, 4.3); −12.7nmol/L (95% CI: −25.1, −0.4) for males and −1.7nmol/L (95% CI: −24.6, 21.1) for females, respectively. Among males, SHBG and testosterone concentrations changed significantly during CIPII; −15.8nmol/L (95% CI: −24.2, −7.5) and −8.3nmol/L (95% CI: −14.4, −2.2), respectively. The difference between CIPII and SC insulin treatment was also significant for change in FSH 1.2U/L (95% CI: 0.1, 2.2) among males.

Conclusions

SHBG concentrations decreased significantly during CIPII treatment. Moreover, the difference in change between CIPII and SC insulin therapy was significant for SHBG and FSH among males. These findings support the hypothesis that portal insulin administration influences circulating SHBG and sex steroids.

Open access

Valentina Guarnotta, Silvia Lucchese, Mariagrazia Irene Mineo, Donatella Mangione, Renato Venezia, Piero Luigi Almasio, and Carla Giordano

Objective

The aim of this study is to clarify, in girls with premature pubarche (PP), the influence of premature androgenization on the prevalence of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Design and patients

Ninety-nine PP girls, 63 who developed PCOS and 36 who did not develop PCOS, were retrospectively included. Clinical, anthropometric, and metabolic parameters were evaluated at the time of diagnosis of PP and after 10 years from menarche to find predictive factors of PCOS.

Results

Young females with PP showed a PCOS prevalence of 64% and showed a higher prevalence of familial history of diabetes (P = 0.004) and a lower prevalence of underweight (P = 0.025) than PP-NO-PCOS. In addition, girls with PP-PCOS showed higher BMI (P < 0.001), waist circumference (P < 0.001), total testosterone (P = 0.026), visceral adiposity index (VAI) (P = 0.013), total cholesterol (P < 0.001), LDL-cholesterol (P < 0.001), non-HDL cholesterol (P < 0.001) and lower age of menarche (P = 0.015), ISI-Matsuda (P < 0.001), DIo (P = 0.002), HDL cholesterol (P = 0.026) than PP-NO-PCOS. Multivariate analysis showed that WC (P = 0.049), ISI-Matsuda (P < 0.001), oral disposition index (DIo) (P < 0.001), VAI (P < 0.001), total testosterone (P < 0.001) and LDL-cholesterol (P < 0.001) are independent predictive factors for PCOS in girls with PP.

Conclusions

Our study established a strong association between multiple risk factors and development of PCOS in PP girls. These risk factors are predominantly related to the regulation of glucose, lipid, and androgen metabolism. Among these factors, WC, ISI-Matsuda, DIo, VAI, total testosterone, and LDL-cholesterol predict PCOS.

Open access

E Kohva, P J Miettinen, S Taskinen, M Hero, A Tarkkanen, and T Raivio

Background

We describe the phenotypic spectrum and timing of diagnosis and management in a large series of patients with disorders of sexual development (DSD) treated in a single pediatric tertiary center.

Methods

DSD patients who had visited our tertiary center during the survey period (between 2004 and 2014) were identified based on an ICD-10 inquiry, and their phenotypic and molecular genetic findings were recorded from patient charts.

Results

Among the 550 DSD patients, 53.3% had 46,XY DSD; 37.1% had sex chromosome DSD and 9.6% had 46,XX DSD. The most common diagnoses were Turner syndrome (19.8%, diagnosed at the mean age of 4.7 ± 5.5 years), Klinefelter syndrome (14.5%, 6.8 ± 6.2 years) and bilateral cryptorchidism (23.1%). Very few patients with 46,XY DSD (7%) or 46,XX DSD (21%) had molecular genetic diagnosis. The yearly rate of DSD diagnoses remained stable over the survey period. After the release of the Nordic consensus on the management of undescended testes, the age at surgery for bilateral cryptorchidism declined significantly (P < 0.001).

Conclusions

Our results show that (i) Turner syndrome and Klinefelter syndrome, the most frequent single DSD diagnoses, are still diagnosed relatively late; (ii) a temporal shift was observed in the management of bilateral cryptorchidism, which may favorably influence patients’ adulthood semen quality and (iii) next-generation sequencing methods are not fully employed in the diagnostics of DSD patients.

Open access

Elin Kahlert, Martina Blaschke, Knut Brockmann, Clemens Freiberg, Onno E Janssen, Nikolaus Stahnke, Domenika Strik, Martin Merkel, Alexander Mann, Klaus-Peter Liesenkötter, and Heide Siggelkow

Objective

Turner syndrome (TS) is characterized by the complete or partial loss of the second sex chromosome and associated with a wide range of clinical manifestations. We aimed to assess the medical care of adult patients with TS in Germany.

Design

Retrospective multicenter observational study.

Methods

Data were collected from medical records of 258 women with TS treated between 2001 and 2017 in five non-university endocrinologic centers in Germany.

Results

Mean age was 29.8 ± 11.6 years, mean height 152 ± 7.7 cm, and mean BMI 26.6 ± 6.3 kg/m2. The karyotype was known in 50% of patients. Information on cholesterol state, liver enzymes, and thyroid status was available in 81–98% of women with TS; autoimmune thyroiditis was diagnosed in 37%. Echocardiography was performed in 42% and cardiac MRI in 8.5%, resulting in a diagnosis of cardiovascular disorder in 28%. Data on growth hormone therapy were available for 40 patients (15%) and data concerning menarche in 157 patients (61%).

Conclusion

In 258 women with TS, retrospective analysis of healthcare data indicated that medical management was focused on endocrine manifestations. Further significant clinical features including cardiovascular disease, renal malformation, liver involvement, autoimmune diseases, hearing loss, and osteoporosis were only marginally if at all considered. Based on this evaluation and in accordance with recent guidelines, we compiled a documentation form facilitating the transition from pediatric to adult care and further medical management of TS patients. The foundation of Turner Centers in March 2019 will improve the treatment of TS women in Germany.

Open access

Anita Hokken-Koelega, Aart-Jan van der Lely, Berthold Hauffa, Gabriele Häusler, Gudmundur Johannsson, Mohamad Maghnie, Jesús Argente, Jean DeSchepper, Helena Gleeson, John W Gregory, Charlotte Höybye, Fahrettin Keleştimur, Anton Luger, Hermann L Müller, Sebastian Neggers, Vera Popovic-Brkic, Eleonora Porcu, Lars Sävendahl, Stephen Shalet, Bessie Spiliotis, and Maithé Tauber

Objective

Seamless transition of endocrine patients from the paediatric to adult setting is still suboptimal, especially in patients with complex disorders, i.e., small for gestational age, Turner or Prader–Willi syndromes; Childhood Cancer Survivors, and those with childhood-onset growth hormone deficiency.

Methods

An expert panel meeting comprised of European paediatric and adult endocrinologists was convened to explore the current gaps in managing the healthcare of patients with endocrine diseases during transition from paediatric to adult care settings.

Results

While a consensus was reached that a team approach is best, discussions revealed that a ‘one size fits all’ model for transition is largely unsuccessful in these patients. They need more tailored care during adolescence to prevent complications like failure to achieve target adult height, reduced bone mineral density, morbid obesity, metabolic perturbations (obesity and body composition), inappropriate/inadequate puberty, compromised fertility, diminished quality of life and failure to adapt to the demands of adult life. Sometimes it is difficult for young people to detach emotionally from their paediatric endocrinologist and/or the abrupt change from an environment of parental responsibility to one of autonomy. Discussions about impending transition and healthcare autonomy should begin in early adolescence and continue throughout young adulthood to ensure seamless continuum of care and optimal treatment outcomes.

Conclusions

Even amongst a group of healthcare professionals with a great interest in improving transition services for patients with endocrine diseases, there is still much work to be done to improve the quality of healthcare for transition patients.