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Chantal A Lebbink, Lisa H de Vries, Inne H M Borel Rinkes, Arthur J A T Braat, Rachel S van Leeuwaarde, Lutske Lodewijk, Mark J C van Treijen, Menno R Vriens, Gerlof D Valk, Hanneke M van Santen, and Bart de Keizer

Objective

To evaluate the usefulness of [18F]fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emissive tomography (PET)/CT in patients with low detectable thyroglobulin levels suspicious for persistent or recurrent differentiated thyroid cancer (DTC).

Methods

A retrospective case series study evaluating FDG PET/CT in patients with detectable thyroglobulin (Tg) levels (≥0.20 and <10.00 ng/mL) after initial treatment with total thyroidectomy and I-131 thyroid remnant ablation for pT1-3aN0-1bM0 DTC. Sensitivity, specificity, positive (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) of FDG PET/CT were calculated.

Results

Twenty-seven patients underwent FDG PET/CT. Median Tg level at FDG PET/CT was 2.00 ng/mL (range 0.30–9.00). FDG PET/CT was positive in 14 patients (51.9%): lesions suspicious for lymph node metastases were depicted in 12 patients, and lung metastases in 2. DTC was confirmed in 13/14 FDG PET/CT-positive patients. In 9/13 patients with a negative FDG PET/CT, DTC was confirmed ≤3 months after FDG PET/CT. The sensitivity, PPV, specificity and NPV were 59.1, 92.9, 80.0 and 30.8%, respectively.

Conclusions

This case series shows that FDG PET/CT might be useful to detect persistent or recurrent DTC in patients with low detectable Tg. However, when FDG PET/CT is negative, this does not rule out DTC and further investigations are necessary.

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Cihan Atila, Odile Gaisl, Deborah R Vogt, Laura Werlen, Gabor Szinnai, and Mirjam Christ-Crain

Background

The differential diagnosis of diabetes insipidus is challenging. The most reliable approaches are copeptin measurements after hypertonic saline infusion or arginine, which is a known growth hormone secretagogue but has recently also been shown to stimulate the neurohypophysis. Similar to arginine, glucagon stimulates growth hormone release, but its effect on the neurohypophysis is poorly studied.

Design

Double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial including 22 healthy participants, 10 patients with central diabetes insipidus, and 10 patients with primary polydipsia at the University Hospital Basel, Switzerland.

Methods

Each participant underwent the glucagon test (s.c. injection of 1 mg glucagon) and placebo test. The primary objective was to determine whether glucagon stimulates copeptin and to explore whether the copeptin response differentiates between diabetes insipidus and primary polydipsia. Copeptin levels were measured at baseline, 30, 60, 90, 120, 150, and 180 min after injection.

Results

In healthy participants, glucagon stimulated copeptin with a median increase of 7.56 (2.38; 28.03) pmol/L, while placebo had no effect (0.10 pmol/L (−0.70; 0.68); P < 0.001). In patients with diabetes insipidus, copeptin showed no relevant increase upon glucagon, with an increase of 0.55 (0.21; 1.65) pmol/L, whereas copeptin was stimulated in patients with primary polydipsia with an increase of 15.70 (5.99; 24.39) pmol/L. Using a copeptin cut-off level of 4.6pmol/L had a sensitivity of 100% (95% CI: 100–100) and a specificity of 90% (95% CI: 70–100) to discriminate between diabetes insipidus and primary polydipsia.

Conclusion

Glucagon stimulates the neurohypophysis, and glucagon-stimulated copeptin has the potential for a safe, novel, and precise test in the differential diagnosis of diabetes insipidus.

Open access

Bu B Yeap, Ross J Marriott, Laurens Manning, Girish Dwivedi, Graeme J Hankey, Frederick C W Wu, Jeremy K Nicholson, and Kevin Murray

Objective

Men are at greater risk from COVID-19 than women. Older, overweight men, and those with type 2 diabetes, have lower testosterone concentrations and poorer COVID-19-related outcomes. We analysed the associations of premorbid serum testosterone concentrations, not confounded by the effects of acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, with COVID-19-related mortality risk in men.

Design

This study is a United Kingdom Biobank prospective cohort study of community-dwelling men aged 40–69 years.

Methods

Serum total testosterone and sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) were measured at baseline (2006–2010). Free testosterone values were calculated (cFT). the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infections and deaths related to COVID-19 were ascertained from 16 March 2020 to 31 January 2021 and modelled using time-stratified Cox regression.

Results

In 159 964 men, there were 5558 SARS-CoV-2 infections and 438 COVID-19 deaths. Younger age, higher BMI, non-White ethnicity, lower educational attainment, and socioeconomic deprivation were associated with incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infections but total testosterone, SHBG, and cFT were not. Adjusting for potential confounders, higher total testosterone was associated with COVID-19-related mortality risk (overall trend P = 0.008; hazard ratios (95% CIs) quintile 1, Q1 vs Q5 (reference), 0.84 (0.65–1.12) Q2:Q5, 0.82 (0.63–1.10); Q3:Q5, 0.80 (0.66–1.00); Q4:Q5, 0.82 (0.75–0.93)). Higher SHBG was also associated with COVID-19 mortality risk (P = 0.008), but cFT was not (P = 0.248).

Conclusions

Middle-aged to older men with the highest premorbid serum total testosterone and SHBG concentrations are at greater risk of COVID-19-related mortality. Men could be advised that having relatively high serum testosterone concentrations does not protect against future COVID-19-related mortality. Further investigation of causality and potential underlying mechanisms is warranted.

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Christina Blagojevic, Tracy Heung, Sarah Malecki, Shengjie Ying, Sabrina Cancelliere, Robert A Hegele, and Anne S Bassett

Objective

Mild to moderate hypertriglyceridemia is a condition often associated with obesity and diabetes, with as yet incomplete knowledge of underlying genetic architecture. The 22q11.2 microdeletion is associated with multimorbidity, including increased risk of obesity and diabetes. In this study, we sought to investigate whether the 22q11.2 microdeletion was associated with mild to moderate hypertriglyceridemia (1.7–10 mmol/L).

Design

This was a cohort study comparing 6793 population-based adults and 267 with a 22q11.2 microdeletion aged 17–69 years, excluding those with diabetes or on statins.

Methods

We used binomial logistic regression modeling to identify predictors of hypertriglyceridemia, accounting for the 22q11.2 microdeletion, male sex, BMI, ethnicity, age, and antipsychotic medications.

Results

The 22q11.2 microdeletion was a significant independent predictor of mild to moderate hypertriglyceridemia (odds ratio (OR): 2.35, 95% CI: 1.70–3.26). All other factors examined were also significant predictors (OR: 1.23–2.10), except for antipsychotic medication use. Within the 22q11.2 microdeletion subgroup, only male sex (OR: 3.10, 95% CI: 1.77–5.44) and BMI (OR: 1.63, 95% CI: 1.14–1.98) were significant predictors of hypertriglyceridemia, evident at mean age 31.2 years.

Conclusions

The 22q11.2 microdeletion is associated with hypertriglyceridemia even when accounting for other known risk factors for elevated triglycerides. This effect is seen in young adulthood (76.6% were <40 years), in the absence of diabetes, and irrespective of antipsychotics, suggesting that the 22q11.2 microdeletion may represent an unrecognized genetic risk factor for hypertriglyceridemia, providing novel opportunities for animal and cellular models. Early dyslipidemia screening and management strategies would appear prudent for individuals with 22q11.2 microdeletions.

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Lucas Bouys, Anna Vaczlavik, Anne Jouinot, Patricia Vaduva, Stéphanie Espiard, Guillaume Assié, Rossella Libé, Karine Perlemoine, Bruno Ragazzon, Laurence Guignat, Lionel Groussin, Léopoldine Bricaire, Isadora Pontes Cavalcante, Fidéline Bonnet-Serrano, Hervé Lefebvre, Marie-Laure Raffin-Sanson, Nicolas Chevalier, Philippe Touraine, Christel Jublanc, Camille Vatier, Gérald Raverot, Magalie Haissaguerre, Luigi Maione, Matthias Kroiss, Martin Fassnacht, Sophie Christin-Maitre, Eric Pasmant, Françoise Borson-Chazot, Antoine Tabarin, Marie-Christine Vantyghem, Martin Reincke, Peter Kamenicky, Marie-Odile North, Jérôme Bertherat, and the COMETE and ENSAT networks groups and collaborators

Objective

Primary bilateral macronodular adrenal hyperplasia (PBMAH) is a heterogeneous disease characterized by adrenal macronodules and variable levels of cortisol excess, with not clearly established clinical diagnostic criteria. It can be caused by ARMC5 germline pathogenic variants. In this study, we aimed to identify predictive criteria for ARMC5 variants.

Methods

We included 352 consecutive index patients from 12 European centers, sequenced for germline ARMC5 alteration. Clinical, biological and imaging data were collected retrospectively.

Results

52 patients (14.8%) carried ARMC5 germline pathogenic variants and showed a more distinct phenotype than non-mutated patients for cortisol excess (24-h urinary free cortisol 2.32 vs 1.11-fold ULN, respectively, P  < 0.001) and adrenal morphology (maximal adrenal diameter 104 vs 83 mm, respectively, P  < 0.001) and were more often surgically or medically treated (67.9 vs 36.8%, respectively, P  < 0.001). ARMC5-mutated patients showed a constant, bilateral adrenal involvement and at least a possible autonomous cortisol secretion (defined by a plasma cortisol after 1 mg dexamethasone suppression above 50 nmol/L), while these criteria were not systematic in WT patients (78.3%). The association of these two criteria holds a 100% sensitivity and a 100% negative predictive value for ARMC5 pathogenic variant.

Conclusion

We report the largest series of index patients investigated for ARMC5 and confirm that ARMC5 pathogenic variants are associated with a more severe phenotype in most cases. To minimize negative ARMC5 screening, genotyping should be limited to clear bilateral adrenal involvement and autonomous cortisol secretion, with an optimum sensitivity for routine clinical practice. These findings will also help to better define PBMAH diagnostic criteria.

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Jeffrey M McManus, Navin Sabharwal, Peter Bazeley, and Nima Sharifi

Context

A sex discordance in COVID exists, with males disproportionately affected. Although sex steroids may play a role in this discordance, no definitive genetic data exist to support androgen-mediated immune suppression neither for viral susceptibility nor for adrenally produced androgens.

Objective

The common adrenal-permissive missense-encoding variant HSD3B1(1245C) that enables androgen synthesis from adrenal precursors and that has been linked to suppression of inflammation in severe asthma was investigated in COVID susceptibility and outcomes reported in the UK Biobank.

Methods

The UK Biobank is a long-term study with detailed medical information and health outcomes for over 500 000 genotyped individuals. We obtained COVID test results, inpatient hospital records, and death records and tested for associations between COVID susceptibility or outcomes and HSD3B1(1245A/C) genotype. Primary analyses were performed on the UK Biobank Caucasian cohort. The outcomes were identification as a COVID case among all subjects, COVID positivity among COVID-tested subjects, and mortality among subjects identified as COVID cases.

Results

Adrenal-permissive HSD3B1(1245C) genotype was associated with identification as a COVID case (odds ratio (OR): 1.11 per C allele, 95% CI: 1.04–1.18, P  = 0.0013) and COVID-test positivity (OR: 1.09, 95% CI: 1.02–1.17, P  = 0.011) in older (≥70 years of age) women. In women identified as COVID cases, there was a positive linear relationship between age and 1245C allele frequency (P  < 0.0001). No associations were found between genotype and mortality or between genotype and circulating sex hormone levels.

Conclusion

Our study suggests that a common androgen synthesis variant regulates immune susceptibility to COVID infection in women, with increasingly strong effects as women age.

Open access

Lisa M Shepherd, Kelly Ann Schmidtke, Jonathan M Hazlehurst, Eka Melson, Janine Dretzke, Noel Hawks, Wiebeke Arlt, Abd A Tahrani, Amelia Swift, and Debbie M Carrick-Sen

Objective

The incidence of adrenal crisis (AC) remains high, particularly for people with primary adrenal insufficiency, despite the introduction of behavioural interventions. The present study aimed to identify and evaluate available evidence of interventions aiming to prevent AC in primary adrenal insufficiency.

Design

This study is a systematic review of the literature and theoretical mapping.

Methods

MEDLINE, MEDLINE in Process, EMBASE, ERIC, Cochrane CENTRAL, CINAHL, PsycINFO, the Health Management Information Consortium and trial registries were searched from inception to November 2021. Three reviewers independently selected studies and extracted data. Two reviewers appraised the studies for the risk of bias.

Results

Seven observational or mixed methods studies were identified where interventions were designed to prevent AC in adrenal insufficiency. Patient education was the focus of all interventions and utilised the same two behaviour change techniques, ‘instruction on how to perform a behaviour’ and ‘pharmacological support’. Barrier and facilitator themes aiding or hindering the intervention included knowledge, behaviour, emotions, skills, social influences and environmental context and resources. Most studies did not measure effectiveness, and assessment of knowledge varied across studies. The study quality was moderate.

Conclusion

This is an emerging field with limited studies available. Further research is required in relation to the development and assessment of different behaviour change interventions to prevent AC.

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Francisco M Acosta, Guillermo Sanchez-Delgado, Borja Martinez-Tellez, Francisco J Osuna-Prieto, Andrea Mendez-Gutierrez, Concepcion M Aguilera, Angel Gil, Jose M Llamas-Elvira, and Jonatan R Ruiz

Objectives

Brown adipose tissue (BAT) is important in the maintenance of cardiometabolic health in rodents. Recent reports appear to suggest the same in humans, although if this is true remains elusive partly because of the methodological bias that affected previous research. This cross-sectional work reports the relationships of cold-induced BAT volume, activity (peak standardized uptake, SUVpeak), and mean radiodensity (an inverse proxy of the triacylglycerols content) with the cardiometabolic and inflammatory profile of 131 young adults, and how these relationships are influenced by sex and body weight.

Design

This is a cross-sectional study.

Methods

Subjects underwent personalized cold exposure for 2 h to activate BAT, followed by static 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose PET-CT scanning to determine BAT variables. Information on cardiometabolic risk (CMR) and inflammatory markers was gathered, and a CMR score and fatty liver index (FLI) were calculated.

Results

In men, BAT volume was positively related to homocysteine and liver damage markers concentrations (independently of BMI and seasonality) and the FLI (all P ≤ 0.05). In men, BAT mean radiodensity was negatively related to the glucose and insulin concentrations, alanine aminotransferase activity, insulin resistance, total cholesterol/HDL-C, LDL-C/HDL-C, the CMR score, and the FLI (all P ≤ 0.02). In women, it was only negatively related to the FLI (P < 0.001). These associations were driven by the results for the overweight and obese subjects. No relationship was seen between BAT and inflammatory markers (P > 0.05).

Conclusions

A larger BAT volume and a lower BAT mean radiodensity are related to a higher CMR, especially in young men, which may support that BAT acts as a compensatory organ in states of metabolic disruption.

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Lucie Coppin, Sophie Giraud, Eric Pasmant, Arnaud Lagarde, Marie-Odile North, Lauriane Le-Collen, Valérie Aubert, Grégory Mougel, Miriam Ladsous, Alyzée Louboutin, Hedia Brixi, Magalie Haissaguerre, Nicolas Scheyer, Marc Klein, Antoine Tabarin, Brigitte Delemer, Anne Barlier, Marie-Françoise Odou, and Pauline Romanet

MEN1 is an autosomal dominant hereditary syndrome characterized by several endocrine tumors, in most cases affecting the parathyroid glands, pancreas, and anterior pituitary. It is the result of inactivating mutations in the tumor suppressor gene MEN1. More than 1300 different mutations have been identified in this gene. Mosaic MEN1 mutations have been previously described in only a few patients in the literature. In this paper, we provide a review of six cases of MEN1 mosaicism reported in the literature supplemented with six additional cases described by the French TENgen network of laboratories. This review highlights that (i) MEN1 mosaicism is not associated with a mild phenotype and results in the same natural history as heterozygous MEN1 mutation and (ii) that more systematic detection of MEN1 mosaic mutation enables improvements in both patient monitoring and genetic counseling.