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Open access

Anna Liori, Damaskini Polychroni, Georgios K Markantes, Maria Stamou, Sarantis Livadas, George Mastorakos, and Neoklis Georgopoulos

Adequate vitamin D levels are particularly important in pregnant women for both maternal and neonatal health. Prior studies have shown a significantly high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency (VDD) among refugees. However, no study has addressed the prevalence of VDD in pregnant refugees and its effects on neonatal health. In this study, we examined the prevalence of VDD in refugee pregnant women living in Greece and compared our results with Greek pregnant inhabitants. VDD was frequent in both groups but was significantly more common in refugees (92.2 vs 67.3% of Greek women, P  = 0.003) with 70.6% of refugees having severe hypovitaminosis D (<10 ng/mL). As a result, most newborns had VDD, which affected refugee newborns to a greater extent. Our results suggest a need to screen newcomer children and pregnant women for VDD in all host countries around the world. Such a screen will appropriately guide early and effective interventions with the goal to prevent adverse neonatal and maternal outcomes.

Open access

Alexander V Amram, Stephen Cutie, and Guo N Huang

Research conducted across phylogeny on cardiac regenerative responses following heart injury implicates endocrine signaling as a pivotal regulator of both cardiomyocyte proliferation and heart regeneration. Three prominently studied endocrine factors are thyroid hormone, vitamin D, and glucocorticoids, which canonically regulate gene expression through their respective nuclear receptors thyroid hormone receptor, vitamin D receptor, and glucocorticoid receptor. The main animal model systems of interest include humans, mice, and zebrafish, which vary in cardiac regenerative responses possibly due to the differential onsets and intensities of endocrine signaling levels throughout their embryonic to postnatal organismal development. Zebrafish and lower vertebrates tend to retain robust cardiac regenerative capacity into adulthood while mice and other higher vertebrates experience greatly diminished cardiac regenerative potential in their initial postnatal period that is sustained throughout adulthood. Here, we review recent progress in understanding how these three endocrine signaling pathways regulate cardiomyocyte proliferation and heart regeneration with a particular focus on the controversial findings that may arise from different assays, cellular-context, age, and species. Further investigating the role of each endocrine nuclear receptor in cardiac regeneration from an evolutionary perspective enables comparative studies between species in hopes of extrapolating the findings to novel therapies for human cardiovascular disease.

Open access

Søs Dragsbæk Larsen, Christine Dalgård, Mathilde Egelund Christensen, Sine Lykkedegn, Louise Bjørkholt Andersen, Marianne Andersen, Dorte Glintborg, and Henrik Thybo Christesen

Background

Low foetal vitamin D status may be associated with higher blood pressure (BP) in later life.

Objective

To examine whether serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D2+3 (s-25OHD) in cord and pregnancy associates with systolic and diastolic BP (SBP; DBP) in children up to 3 years of age.

Design

Prospective, population-based cohort study.

Methods

We included 1594 singletons from the Odense Child Cohort with available cord s-25OHD and BP data at median age 3.7 months (48% girls), 18.9 months (44% girls) or 3 years (48% girls). Maternal s-25OHD was also assessed at gestational ages 12 and 29 weeks. Multiple regression models were stratified by sex a priori and adjusted for maternal educational level, season of birth and child height, weight and age.

Results

In 3-year-old girls, SBP decreased with −0.7 mmHg (95% CI −1.1; −0.3, P = 0.001) and DBP with −0.4 mmHg (95% CI −0.7; −0.1, P = 0.016) for every 10 nmol/L increase in cord s-25OHD in adjusted analyses. Moreover, the adjusted odds of having SBP >90th percentile were reduced by 30% for every 10 nmol/L increase in cord s-25OHD (P = 0.004) and by 64% for cord s-25OHD above the median 45.1 nmol/L (P = 0.02). Similar findings were observed between pregnancy s-25OHD and 3-year SBP, cord s-25OHD and SBP at 18.9 months, and cord s-25OHD and DBP at 3 years. No consistent associations were observed between s-25OHD and BP in boys.

Conclusion

Cord s-25OHD was inversely associated with SBP and DBP in young girls, but not in boys. Higher vitamin D status in foetal life may modulate BP in young girls. The sex difference remains unexplained.

Open access

Athanasios D Anastasilakis, Marina Tsoli, Gregory Kaltsas, and Polyzois Makras

Langerhans cell histiocytosis (LCH) is a rare disease of not well-defined etiology that involves immune cell activation and frequently affects the skeleton. Bone involvement in LCH usually presents in the form of osteolytic lesions along with low bone mineral density. Various molecules involved in bone metabolism are implicated in the pathogenesis of LCH or may be affected during the course of the disease, including interleukins (ILs), tumor necrosis factor α, receptor activator of NF-κB (RANK) and its soluble ligand RANKL, osteoprotegerin (OPG), periostin and sclerostin. Among them IL-17A, periostin and RANKL have been proposed as potential serum biomarkers for LCH, particularly as the interaction between RANK, RANKL and OPG not only regulates bone homeostasis through its effects on the osteoclasts but also affects the activation and survival of immune cells. Significant changes in circulating and lesional RANKL levels have been observed in LCH patients irrespective of bone involvement. Standard LCH management includes local or systematic administration of corticosteroids and chemotherapy. Given the implication of RANK, RANKL and OPG in the pathogenesis of the disease and the osteolytic nature of bone lesions, agents aiming at inhibiting the RANKL pathway and/or osteoclastic activation, such as bisphosphonates and denosumab, may have a role in the therapeutic approach of LCH although further clinical investigation is warranted.

Open access

Ozlem Atan Sahin, Damla Goksen, Aysel Ozpinar, Muhittin Serdar, and Huseyin Onay

Background

There have been studies focused on FokI, BsmI, ApaI and TaqI polymorphisms of the vitamin D receptor (VDR) gene and susceptibility to type 1 diabetes mellitus with controversial results.

Methods

This present study is a meta-analysis investigating the association between FokI, ApaI, TaqI and BsmI polymorphisms of VDR gene and type 1 DM in children. A literature search was performed using Medline, EMBASE, Cochrane and PubMed. Any study was considered eligible for inclusion if at least one of FokI, ApaI, TaqI and BsmI polymorphisms was determined, and outcome was type 1 DM at pediatric age.

Results

A total of 9 studies comprising 1053 patients and 1017 controls met the study inclusion criteria. The pooled odds ratios (ORs) of the FokI, ApaI, TaqI and BsmI polymorphisms were combined and calculated. Forest plots and funnel plots of the OR value distributions were drawn. Our meta-analysis has demonstrated statistically significant associations between DM1 and VDR genotypes, BsmIBB (P < 0.05), BsmIBb, (P < 0.05), BsmIbb (P < 0.05), TaqITT (P < 0.05) and TaqItt (P < 0.05) in children.

Conclusion

The results indicated that BsmIBB, BsmIBb and TaqItt polymorphisms were associated with an increased risk of type 1 DM, whereas BsmIbb and TaqITT had protective effect for type 1 DM in children.

Open access

June Young Choi, Jin Wook Yi, Jun Hyup Lee, Ra-Yeong Song, Hyeongwon Yu, Hyungju Kwon, Young Jun Chai, Su-jin Kim, and Kyu Eun Lee

The purpose of this study was to assess the relationship between vitamin D receptor gene (VDR) expression and prognostic factors in papillary thyroid cancer (PTC). mRNA sequencing and somatic mutation data from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) were analyzed. VDR mRNA expression was compared to clinicopathologic variables by linear regression. Tree-based classification was applied to find cutoff and patients were split into low and high VDR group. Logistic regression, Kaplan–Meier analysis, differentially expressed gene (DEG) test and pathway analysis were performed to assess the differences between two VDR groups. VDR mRNA expression was elevated in PTC than that in normal thyroid tissue. VDR expressions were high in classic and tall-cell variant PTC and lateral neck node metastasis was present. High VDR group was also associated with classic and tall cell subtype, AJCC stage IV and lower recurrence-free survival. DEG test reveals that 545 genes were upregulated in high VDR group. Thyroid cancer-related pathways were enriched in high VDR group in pathway analyses. VDR mRNA overexpression was correlated with worse prognostic factors such as subtypes of papillary thyroid carcinoma that are known to be worse prognosis, lateral neck node metastasis, advanced stage and recurrence-free survival.

Open access

Federica Saponaro, Alessandro Saba, Sabina Frascarelli, Concetta Prontera, Aldo Clerico, Marco Scalese, Maria Rita Sessa, Filomena Cetani, Simona Borsari, Elena Pardi, Antonella Marvelli, Claudio Marcocci, Claudio Passino, and Riccardo Zucchi

Objectives

The aims of this paper were to evaluate the levels of Vitamin D (VitD) in patients with heart failure (HF), compared to a control group, to assess the effects of VitD on HF outcome and to compare VitD measurement between LIAISON immunoassay and HPLC-MS-MS methods in this population.

Design and Methods

We collected clinical, biochemical and outcome data from 247 patients with HF and in a subgroup of 151 patients, we measured VitD both with LIAISON and HPLC-MS-MS.

Results

HF patients had statistically lower 25OHD levels (45.2 ± 23.7 nmol/L vs 58.2 ± 24.0 nmol/L, P < 0.001) and a statistically higher prevalence of VitD insufficiency (61.1% vs 39.5%, P < 0.001) and deficiency (24.7% vs 6.6%, P < 0.001), compared to healthy controls. There was a significant inverse relationship between baseline 25OHD and risk of HF-related death, with a HR of 0.59 (95% CI 0.37–0.92, P = 0.02), confirmed in a multivariate adjusted analysis. Kaplan–Meier survival analyses showed that VitD insufficiency was associated with reduced survival in HF patients (log rank P = 0.017). There was a good agreement between LIAISON and HPLC-MS-MS (Cohen’s kappa coefficient 0.70), but the prevalence of VitD insufficiency was significantly higher with the former compared to the latter method (58.3%, n = 88 vs 55.6%, n = 84, P < 0.001). LIAISON underestimated the 25OHD levels and showed a mean relative bias of −0.739% with 95% of limits of agreement (−9.00 to +7.52%), when compared to HPLC-MS-MS.

Conclusions

25OHD levels adequately measured by HPLC-MS-MS showed to be low in HF population and to be correlated with HF-related risk of death.

Open access

Sofya Gronskaia, Galina Melnichenko, Liudmila Rozhinskaya, Tatiana Grebennikova, Elizaveta Mamedova, Ekaterina Pigarova, Elena Przhialkovskaya, Larisa Dzeranova, Ivan Dedov, Valentin Fadeyev, Maria Luisa Brandi, and Zhanna Belaya

Hypoparathyroidism and pseudohypoparathyroidism are rare endocrine disorders, characterized by low serum calcium due to inappropriate parathyroid hormone (PTH) levels or resistance to its action. There is little epidemiological information regarding chronic hypoparathyroidism in Russia. This study aims to build a registry database of Russian patients with chronic hypoparathyroidism who were referred for hospital treatment in order to conduct initial analysis of clinical presentations and hospital management. The Italian registry model was taken to be able to integrate our data in the future. Two hundred patients with hypoparathyroidism (n = 194) and pseudohypoparathyroidism (n = 6) were enrolled over 2 years (2017–2019). The most frequent cause of hypoparathyroidism was neck surgery (82.5%, mostly females), followed by idiopathic hypoparathyroidism (10%), syndromic forms of genetic hypoparathyroidism (4.5%) and forms of defective PTH action (3%). Calcium supplements and alfacalcidol were prescribed in most cases. However, a minority of patients (n = 6) needed to receive teriparatide as the only way to maintain calcium levels and to prevent symptoms of hypocalcemia. Consequently, substitution treatment with parathyroid hormone should be available in certain cases of hypoparathyroidism. This database will be useful to estimate the potential requirement for recombinant PTH in Russia and standards for clinical and therapeutic approaches.

Open access

Cristina Lamas, Elena Navarro, Anna Casterás, Paloma Portillo, Victoria Alcázar, María Calatayud, Cristina Álvarez-Escolá, Julia Sastre, Evangelina Boix, Lluis Forga, Almudena Vicente, Josep Oriola, Jordi Mesa, and Nuria Valdés

Primary hyperparathyroidism is the most frequent manifestation of multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) syndrome. Bone and renal complications are common. Surgery is the treatment of choice, but the best timing for surgery is controversial and predictors of persistence and recurrence are not well known. Our study describes the clinical characteristics and the surgical outcomes, after surgery and in the long term, of the patients with MEN1 and primary hyperparathyroidism included in the Spanish Registry of Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia, Pheochromocytomas and Paragangliomas (REGMEN). Eighty-nine patients (49 men and 40 women, 34.2 ± 13 years old) were included. Sixty-four out of the 89 underwent surgery: a total parathyroidectomy was done in 13 patients, a subtotal parathyroidectomy in 34 and a less than subtotal parathyroidectomy in 15. Remission rates were higher after a total or a subtotal parathyroidectomy than after a less than subtotal (3/4 and 20/22 vs 7/12, P < 0.05), without significant differences in permanent hypoparathyroidism (1/5, 9/23 and 0/11, N.S.). After a median follow-up of 111 months, 20 of the 41 operated patients with long-term follow-up had persistent or recurrent hyperparathyroidism. We did not find differences in disease-free survival rates between different techniques, patients with or without permanent hypoparathyroidism and patients with different mutated exons, but a second surgery was more frequent after a less than subtotal parathyroidectomy.

Open access

Anna Gorbacheva, Anna Eremkina, Daria Goliusova, Julia Krupinova, and Natalia Mokrysheva

Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 (MEN1) is the most common cause of hereditary primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT). Bone disorders are considered one of the key symptoms in PHPT present with the significant reduction in bone mineral density and low-energy fractures. Previously, these bone disorders were believed to be caused solely by the increase in the level of parathyroid hormone and its subsequent effect on bone resorption. The current paradigm, however, states that the mutations in the menin gene, which cause the development of MEN1, can also affect the metabolism of the cells of the osteoid lineage. This review analyzes both the proven and the potential intracellular mechanisms through which menin can affect bone metabolism.