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Devis Pascut, Sofia Tamini, Silvia Bresolin, Pablo Giraudi, Giuseppe Basso, Alessandro Minocci, Claudio Tiribelli, Graziano Grugni and Alessandro Sartorio

Prader–Willi syndrome (PWS) represents the most common genetic-derived obesity disorder caused by the loss of expression of genes located on the paternal chromosome 15q11.2-q13. The PWS phenotype shows peculiar physical, endocrine and metabolic characteristics compared to those observed in non-syndromic essential obesity. Since miRNAs have now a well-established role in many molecular pathways, including regulatory networks related to obesity, this pilot study was aimed to characterize the expression of circulating miRNAs in PWS compared to essential obesity. The circulating miRNome of 10 PWS and 10 obese subjects, adequately matched for age, BMI and sex, was profiled throughout Genechip miRNA 4.0 microarray analysis. We identified 362 out of 2578 mature miRNAs to be expressed in serum of the studied population. The circulating miRNA signature significantly characterising the two populations include 34 differently expressed RNAs. Among them, miR-24-3p, miR-122 and miR-23a-3p highly differ between the two groups with a FC >10 in obese compared to PWS. In the obese subjects, miR-7107-5p, miR-6880-3p, miR-6793-3p and miR-4258 were associated to the presence of steatosis. A different signature of miRNAs significantly distinguished PWS with steatosis from PWS without steatosis, involving miR-619-5p, miR-4507, miR-4656, miR-7847-3p and miR-6782-5p. The miRNA target GO enrichment analysis showed the different pathway involved in these two different forms of obesity. Although the rarity of PWS actually represents a limitation to the availability of large series, the present study provides novel hints on the molecular pathogenesis of syndromic and non-syndromic obesity.

Open access

Giorgio Bedogni, Andrea Mari, Alessandra De Col, Sofia Tamini, Amalia Gastaldelli and Alessandro Sartorio

Few data are available on the association between serum lipids and insulin secretion (ISEC) in children. We evaluated the association of triglycerides (TG), HDL cholesterol (HDL-C) and LDL cholesterol (LDL-C) with ISEC in 1150 non-diabetic obese children and adolescents using multivariable robust median regression. The following models were employed: (1) IGI or incAUCR as the ISEC response variable; (2) QUICKI, OGIS, the Stumvoll index or the Matsuda insulin sensitivity index as the insulin sensitivity (ISEN) predictor; (3) TG, HDL-C and LDL-C as the predictors of interest; (4) 120-min glucose, age, sex and body mass index as confounders. LDL-C and TG were not associated with ISEC in any model. In three out of four IGI models, an increase of 1 interquartile range (IQR) of HDL-C was associated with a decrease of median incAUCR ranging from −9 (robust 95% CI −17 to −2) to −8 (−14 to −1) pmol/mmol. In two out of four incAUCR models, an increase of 1 IQR of HDL-C was associated with a decrease of median IGI ranging from −8 (−15 to −1) to −7 (−11 to −2) pmol/mmol. TG and LDL-C are not associated and HDL-C is inversely associated with ISEC in obese children and adolescents.