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Open access

Brien Mehmet, Steve Gillard, Channa N Jayasena, and Sofia Llahana

Objective

Klinefelter syndrome (KS) is the second-most prevalent chromosomal disorder in men, though late diagnosis is very common and 50–75% of men remain undiagnosed. Evidence suggests that men with KS have impaired quality of life (QoL) but research on how the diagnosis of KS is associated with different QoL domains and what factors influence patients’ QoL is limited. This study aimed to provide a systematic review of the published evidence on factors that influence QoL in men with KS.

Design

Systematic review and meta-analysis with narrative synthesis.

Methods

Medline, Cochrane, Embase, Psychinfo, CINAHL, BASE and relevant publication reference lists were searched in January 2021. Eligible studies included randomised control trials, cohort studies, cross-sectional studies and epidemiology studies on KS and its effect on QoL and all domains of World Health Organisation (WHO) Quality of Life 100 (WHOQOL-100). Clinical studies with no date restriction published in English were included.

Results

Thematic analysis was completed on 13 studies, with a meta-analysis of intelligence quotient completed on 7 studies. Twelve out of the 13 studies suggested that KS negatively affected the QoL outcomes and KS was associated with impairments in physical, psychological, level independence and social relationship domains of WHOQOL-100. Meta-analysis suggested that men with KS have significantly lower full-scale Intelligence Quotient vs controls (P < 0.00001).

Conclusions

This is the first evidence synthesis of QoL in men with KS. Current evidence suggests that combined physical and psychological impairments affect men with KS who also experience impairments in relationships and independence in society. Further research is needed to identify factors that influence the QoL in men with KS.

Open access

Catherine Peters and Nadia Schoenmakers

Transient congenital hypothyroidism (TCH) refers to congenital hypothyroidism which spontaneously resolves in the first few months or years of life. Currently, there is a paucity of reliable markers predicting TCH at diagnosis, and the diagnosis is established following the withdrawal of levothyroxine therapy around 3 years of age. The incidence of TCH is increasing, and it is a major contributor to the overall increase in the incidence of CH in recent studies. Both genetic factors, in particular mutations affecting DUOX2 and DUOXA2, and environmental factors, for example, iodine deficiency and excess, anti- TSHR antibodies and exposure to antithyroid or iodine-rich medications, may cause TCH. Resolution of TCH in childhood may reflect both normal thyroid physiology (decreased thyroid hormone biosynthesis requirements after the neonatal period) and clearance or cessation of environmental precipitants. The relative contributions and interactions of genetic and environmental factors to TCH, and the extent to which TCH may be prevented, require evaluation in future population-based studies.

Open access

Elin Pettersen Sørgjerd, Robin Mjelle, Vidar Beisvåg, Arnar Flatberg, Valdemar Grill, and Bjørn O Åsvold

Objective

Diabetes is a heterogeneous disease and a precise diagnosis of diabetes subgroups is necessary to initiate proper early treatment and clinical management of the disease. Circulating small RNAs (sRNAs) are potentially diagnostic biomarkers in diseases, including diabetes. Here we aimed to examine whether profiles of circulating sRNAs differed between patients with autoimmune and non-autoimmune diabetes and non-diabetic controls.

Design

This cross-sectional case–control study included participants from the third survey of the HUNT study.

Methods

We performed sRNA sequencing in serum from adult-onset type 1 diabetes (n = 51), type 2 diabetes (n = 50) and latent autoimmune diabetes in adult (LADA, n  = 51), as well as non-diabetic HUNT3 participants as control group (n = 51). Differential expression analysis of the sRNAs was performed in R using limma-voom.

Results

We identified differences in sRNA expression between autoimmune (type 1 diabetes and LADA) and non-autoimmune diabetes (type 2 diabetes) and between patients with diabetes and non-diabetic controls. Focusing on miRNA, we identified 10 differentially expressed mature miRNAs and 30 differentially expressed miRNA variants (isomiRs). We also identified significant changes within other sRNA classes, including a pronounced downregulation of a tRNA fragment in patients with diabetes compared to non-diabetic controls. We created cross-validated sRNA signatures based on the significant sRNAs that distinguished patients with diabetes from non-diabetic controls, and autoimmune from non-autoimmune diabetes, with high specificity and sensitivity. sRNA profiles did not distinguish between type 1 diabetes and LADA.

Conclusions

Circulating sRNAs are differentially expressed between patients with diabetes and non-diabetic controls and between autoimmune and non-autoimmune diabetes.

Open access

Rasmus Juul Kildemoes, Christian Hollensen, Beverly M K Biller, Gudmundur Johannsson, Yutaka Takahashi, and Michael Højby Rasmussen

Objective

Growth hormone (GH) replacement therapy in patients with adult growth hormone deficiency (AGHD) is individually titrated due to variable dose–responses among patients. The aim of this study was to provide clinical guidance on dosing and titration of the novel long-acting GH derivative somapacitan based on analyses of somapacitan dose–insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) responses in AGHD patients.

Design

Analyses of dosing information, 4364 somapacitan concentration samples and 4880 IGF-I samples from 330 AGHD patients treated with somapacitan in three phase 3 trials.

Methods

Pharmacokinetic/pharmacodynamic modelling was used to evaluate starting dose groups by age and oral oestrogen therapy, characterise the dose–IGF-I response in the overall AGHD population and patient subgroups, predict the IGF-I response to dose changes and simulate missed dosing.

Results

The analyses supported the clinical recommendations of higher starting doses for younger patients and women on oral oestrogen replacement therapy. For patients switching from daily GH treatment, the mean maintenance dose ratio between somapacitan (mg/week) and somatropin (mg/day) was predicted to be 8.2 (observed interquartile range of 6.7–9.1). Simulations of IGF-I SDS profiles confirmed the appropriate time for IGF-I sampling to be 3–4 days after somapacitan dosing and supported somapacitan administration with up to 3 days delay in case of missed dosing. Subgroup analyses characterised the dose–exposure–IGF-I response in patient subgroups and indicated that dose requirements are mainly influenced by sex and oral oestrogen treatment.

Conclusions

This study extends the knowledge of the somapacitan dose–IGF-I response and provides information on clinical dosing of once-weekly somapacitan in patients with AGHD.

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.

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.

Open access

Treena Cranston, Hannah Boon, Mie K Olesen, Fiona J Ryan, Deborah Shears, Rosemary London, Hussam Rostom, Taha Elajnaf, Rajesh V Thakker, and Fadil M Hannan

Objective

The autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome type 1 (APS-1) is an autosomal recessive disorder characterised by immune dysregulation and autoimmune endocrine gland destruction. APS-1 is caused by biallelic mutations affecting the autoimmune regulator (AIRE) gene on chromosome 21q22.3, which facilitates immunological self-tolerance. The objective was to investigate >300 probands with suspected APS-1 or isolated hypoparathyroidism for AIRE abnormalities.

Methods

Probands were assessed by DNA sequence analysis. Novel variants were characterised using 3D modelling of the AIRE protein. Restriction enzyme and microsatellite analysis were used to investigate for uniparental isodisomy.

Results

Biallelic AIRE mutations were identified in 35 probands with APS-1 and 5 probands with isolated hypoparathyroidism. These included a novel homozygous p.(His14Pro) mutation, predicted to disrupt the N-terminal caspase activation recruitment domain of the AIRE protein. Furthermore, an apparently homozygous AIRE mutation, p.Leu323fs, was identified in an APS-1 proband, who is the child of non-consanguineous asymptomatic parents. Microsatellite analysis revealed that the proband inherited two copies of the paternal mutant AIRE allele due to uniparental isodisomy. Hypoparathyroidism was the most common endocrine manifestation in AIRE mutation-positive probands and >45% of those harbouring AIRE mutations had at least two diseases out of the triad of candidiasis, hypoparathyroidism, and hypoadrenalism. In contrast, type 1 diabetes and hypothyroidism occurred more frequently in AIRE mutation-negative probands with suspected APS-1. Around 30% of AIRE mutation-negative probands with isolated hypoparathyroidism harboured mutations in other hypoparathyroid genes.

Conclusions

This study of a large cohort referred for AIRE mutational analysis expands the spectrum of genetic abnormalities causing APS-1.

Open access

Steven G Waguespack, Alexander Drilon, Jessica J Lin, Marcia S Brose, Ray McDermott, Mohammed Almubarak, Jessica Bauman, Michela Casanova, Anuradha Krishnamurthy, Shivaani Kummar, Serge Leyvraz, Do-Youn Oh, Keunchil Park, Davendra Sohal, Eric Sherman, Ricarda Norenberg, Josh D Silvertown, Nicoletta Brega, David S Hong, and Maria E Cabanillas

Objective

Larotrectinib is a highly selective tropomyosin receptor kinase (TRK) inhibitor with demonstrated efficacy across various TRK fusion-positive solid tumours. We assessed the efficacy and safety of larotrectinib in patients with TRK fusion-positive thyroid carcinoma (TC).

Methods

We pooled data from three phase I/II larotrectinib clinical trials (NCT02576431, NCT02122913, and NCT02637687). The primary endpoint was the investigator-assessed objective response rate (ORR) per Response Evaluation Criteria in Solid Tumors v1.1. Secondary endpoints included duration of response (DoR), progression-free survival (PFS), overall survival (OS), and safety. Data cut-off: July 2020.

Results

Twenty-nine patients (median age: 60; range: 6–80) with TRK fusion-positive TC were treated. Tumour histology was papillary (PTC) in 20 (69%) patients, follicular (FTC) in 2 (7%), and anaplastic (ATC) in 7 (24%) patients. Among 28 evaluable patients, ORR was 71% (95% CI: 51–87); best responses were complete response in 2 (7%) patients, partial response in 18 (64%), stable disease in 4 (14%), progressive disease in 3 (11%), and undetermined in 1 (4%) due to clinical progression prior to the first post-baseline assessment. ORR was 86% (95% CI: 64–97) for PTC/FTC and 29% (95% CI 4–71) for ATC. Median time to response was 1.87 months (range 1.64–3.68). The 24-month DoR, PFS, and OS rates were 81, 69, and 76%, respectively. Treatment-related adverse events were mainly grades 1–2.

Conclusion

In TRK fusion-positive TC, larotrectinib demonstrates rapid and durable disease control and a favourable safety profile in patients with advanced disease requiring systemic therapy.

Significance statement

NTRK gene fusions are known oncogenic drivers and have been identified in various histologies of thyroid carcinoma, most commonly in papillary thyroid carcinoma. This is the first publication specifically studying a TRK inhibitor in a cohort of TRK fusion-positive thyroid carcinoma patients. In the current study, the highly selective TRK inhibitor larotrectinib showed durable antitumour efficacy and a favourable safety profile in patients with TRK fusion-positive thyroid carcinoma. Our findings show that patients with advanced non-medullary thyroid carcinoma who may require systemic therapy could be considered for testing for gene fusions by next-generation sequencing.

Open access

Niamh-Maire McLennan, Jonathan Hazlehurst, Shakila Thangaratinam, and Rebecca M Reynolds

There is an increase in maternal metabolic burden due to the rise in pregnancies complicated by obesity, gestational diabetes, type 2 diabetes and polycystic ovary syndrome. Metabolic dysfunction during pregnancy is associated with increased risks of long-term morbidity and mortality for women and their offspring. Lifestyle interventions in pregnancy in women at risk of metabolic dysfunction have demonstrated short-term improvements such as reduced gestational weight gain and lowered risk of gestational diabetes. It is not known whether these interventions lead to sustained improvements in the metabolic health of the mother and baby. Pharmacological interventions have also shown benefits for the mother and baby in pregnancy, including improvements in glycaemic control, reduction in gestational weight gain and reduction in large for gestational age infants; however, there remains uncertainty over long-term outcomes for mother and child. Existing studies on interventions targeting metabolic health are limited to selected populations in the preconception and postpartum periods and lack follow-up beyond delivery of the intervention. The COVID-19 pandemic has refocused our attention on the effects of maternal metabolic ill-health that play a role in contributing to premature morbidity and mortality. There is an urgent need for strategies to accurately identify the growing number of women and offspring at risk of long-term adverse metabolic health. Strategies which focus on early identification and risk stratification using individualised risk scores in the pre and inter-conception periods must take priority if we are to target and improve the metabolic health of women and their offspring who are at highest risk.