C Berg, T E Wessendorf, F Mortsch, M Forsting, H Teschler, T Weischer, K Mann, B Saller, and B L Herrmann
M Deandrea, P Trimboli, A Creanza, F Garino, A Mormile, S Bertolino, R Garberoglio, P P Limone, and M Zingrillo
Background and aim:
Cystic thyroid nodules (CNs), although generally benign, can cause compressive or aesthetic problems. Percutaneous ethanol injection (PEI) can represent an alternative to surgery. The present retrospective study evaluates: (i) the long-term outcome of CNs after PEI; (ii) the differences between two different PEI protocols; (iii) the CNs response according to the liquid component.
Materials and methods:
The study comprises 358 nodules post-PEI followed for at least 2 years. PEI was performed according to two different treatment protocols with a single (Foggia) or double (Turin) alcohol injection. CNs were divided according to their composition: cystic (CYS) >90%, mainly cystic (M-CYS) 75–90%, mixed (MIX) 50–75%, solid-mixed (S-MIX) 35-50%. The volume reduction rate (VRR) was defined as nodule volume (mL) after PEI/nodule volume (mL) before PEI x 100.
The 1-year VRR was significantly higher than that at 6 months (89.5% vs 72.9%, P = 0.0005), no differences were observed after 1 year. A significant difference between Turin and Foggia was observed only in VRR at early visit (79% vs 86%, respectively, P = 0.002) and recurrence rate (14% vs 24%, respectively, P = 0.001). Minor side-effects were infrequent. In 192 nodules with a 10-year follow-up CYS showed higher VRR than MIX and S-MIX nodules (P < 0.001).
Our study reported that the long-term outcome of CNs treated with PEI is excellent regardless of the PEI technique utilized; the larger the cystic amount, the higher the VRR. Based on present results, PEI can be considered as the first-line choice for treating thyroid CNs.
Kristen M Beavers, Katelyn A Greene, and Elaine W Yu
Despite well recognized improvements in obesity-related comorbidities, increasing evidence implicates bariatric surgery in the onset of adverse skeletal health outcomes. The purpose of this review is to provide a focused update in three critical areas: (i) emergent data on sleeve gastrectomy and bone loss, (ii) evidence linking bariatric surgery to incident fracture, and (iii) intervention strategies designed to mitigate surgical bone loss. Better understanding of these issues will inform our treatment of skeletal health for patients planning bariatric surgery.
C Poitou, H Mosbah, and K Clément
Obesity, defined by an excess of body fat impacting on health, is a complex disease resulting from the interaction between many genetic/epigenetic factors and environmental triggers. For some clinical situations with severe obesity, it has been possible to classify these obesity forms according to the molecular alterations. These include: (i) syndromic obesity, which associates severe early-onset obesity with neurodevelopmental disorders and/or polymalformative syndrome and (ii) non-syndromic monogenic obesity, due to gene variants most often located in the leptin-melanocortin pathway. In addition to severe obesity, patients affected by these diseases display complex somatic conditions, eventually including obesity comorbidities, neuropsychological and psychiatric disorders. These conditions render the clinical management of these patients particularly challenging. Patients’ early diagnosis is critical to allow specialized and multidisciplinary care, with a necessary interaction between the health and social sectors. Up to now, the management of genetic obesity was only based, above all, on controlling the patient's environment, which involves limiting access to food, ensuring a reassuring daily eating environment that limits impulsiveness, and the practice of adapted, supported, and supervised physical activity. Bariatric surgery has also been undertaken in genetic obesity cases with uncertain outcomes. The context is rapidly changing, as new innovative therapies are currently being tested both for syndromic and monogenic forms of obesity. This review focuses on care management and new therapeutic opportunities in genetic obesity, including the use of the melanocortin 4 agonist, setmelanotide. The results from ongoing trials will hopefully pave the way to a future precision medicine approach for genetic obesity.
John P Bilezikian, Daniel Bikle, Martin Hewison, Marise Lazaretti-Castro, Anna Maria Formenti, Aakriti Gupta, Mahesh V Madhavan, Nandini Nair, Varta Babalyan, Nicholas Hutchings, Nicola Napoli, Domenico Accili, Neil Binkley, Donald W Landry, and Andrea Giustina
The SARS-CoV-2 virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic has generated an explosion of interest both in the mechanisms of infection leading to dissemination and expression of this disease, and in potential risk factors that may have a mechanistic basis for disease propagation or control. Vitamin D has emerged as a factor that may be involved in these two areas. The focus of this article is to apply our current understanding of vitamin D as a facilitator of immunocompetence both with regard to innate and adaptive immunity and to consider how this may relate to COVID-19 disease. There are also intriguing potential links to vitamin D as a factor in the cytokine storm that portends some of the most serious consequences of SARS-CoV-2 infection, such as the acute respiratory distress syndrome. Moreover, cardiac and coagulopathic features of COVID-19 disease deserve attention as they may also be related to vitamin D. Finally, we review the current clinical data associating vitamin D with SARS-CoV-2 infection, a putative clinical link that at this time must still be considered hypothetical.
Hyun-Wook Chae, Ji-Hoon Na, Ho-Seong Kim, and Young-Mock Lee
Mitochondrial myopathy, encephalopathy, lactic acidosis, and stroke-like episodes (MELAS) syndrome is a very rare condition; it encompasses a diverse group of disorders including diabetes. Phenotypic variability can be attributed to heteroplasmy along with varying proportions of mutant and WT mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA). To examine the clinical relationship between mitochondrial diabetes and mutational load, we analyzed the mtDNA of children and young adolescents with MELAS syndrome using next generation sequencing (NGS).
Design and methods:
Of 57 subjects with suspected MELAS syndrome, 32 children and young adolescents were diagnosed as MELAS syndrome with mtDNA A-to-G transition at nucleotide 3243. Mutation load studies and NGS were performed for 25 subjects.
The mean mutation load was 60.4 ± 18.4% (range: 22.5‒100). Of the 25 subjects with NGS results, 15 (60%) were diagnosed with DM and 2 (8%) were diagnosed with impaired glucose tolerance (IGT). The mutational load of subjects inversely correlated with first symptom onset, age at diagnosis of MELAS syndrome, and DM (P < 0.001). However, mutational load did not correlate with the clinical severity or progression of DM/IGT. There was no significant difference in insulin resistance or sensitivity indices between the low- and high-mutation load groups. During the 3.7 years of follow-up, insulin resistance indices were not significantly different between baseline and follow-up.
We can infer that the mutation load in the MELAS syndrome is significantly associated with the onset of symptoms and associated diseases, including mitochondrial diabetes. However, it may not influence disease progression.
Flavia Magri, Spyridon Chytiris, Laura Croce, Martina Molteni, Giulia Bendotti, Giovanni Gruosso, Samuel Tata Ngnitejeu, Manuela Agozzino, Mario Rotondi, and Luca Chiovato
The ultrasonographic scores EU TI-RADS and ACR TI-RADS were introduced to give the clinicians indications for fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC). The predictive role of these scores was never evaluated and compared in a surgical series of patients. The aim of this study was to evaluate the ex post diagnostic accuracy of EU TI-RADS and ACR TI-RADS in a real-life series of thyroidectomized patients and to evaluate the ‘missing’ thyroid cancer following the operational indications of these scores.
Retrospective monocentric cohort study.
In total, 255 patients (harboring 304 nodules) undergoing thyroidectomy for benign and malignant thyroid conditions were enrolled. The prevalence of thyroid malignancy for each class of ACR TI-RADS and EU TI-RADS, their diagnostic accuracy, the number of ‘unnecessary’ FNAC and the number of ‘missed’ cancers were evaluated.
ACR TI-RADS and EU TI-RADS score had similar and satisfactory accuracy values for predicting thyroid malignancy (AUC: 0.835 for ACR TI-RADS vs 0.827 for EU TI-RADS). The ACR TI-RADS and EU TI-RADS categories (suspicious vs non-suspicious), age, sex and presence of a single nodule significantly and independently predicted the presence of malignancy in a logistic regression model. An ex post analysis according to the indications for FNAC for each score indicated that 31 and 16 cases of cancer would have been missed by ACR TI-RADS and EU TI-RADS scores, respectively.
ACR TI-RADS and EU TI-RADS display a good performance in predicting thyroid cancer when histology is taken as reference standard, but additional clinical judgement is required to decide the indication for FNAC.
Viivi Saari, Elina Holopainen, Outi Mäkitie, and Saila Laakso
To determine the natural course of pubertal development, growth during puberty, and development of POI in females with autoimmune polyendocrinopathy-candidiasis-ectodermal dystrophy (APECED), also called autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome type I.
Longitudinal follow-up study.
A national cohort of females with APECED aged ≥12 years were followed during 1965–2018. Attainment of adult height was defined when patients’ height increased less than 1 cm per year. Diagnosis of POI was based on delayed puberty or POI symptoms with amenorrhea, and/or FSH ≥40 IU/L.
Altogether 40 women with APECED were followed up to the average age of 37.3 (range: 14.6–61.9) years; 16 females (40%) were ≥ 40 years. Pubertal development started spontaneously in 34 patients and 29 had spontaneous menarche. POI developed in 28 patients (70%) at the median age of 16.0 years (range: 11.3–36.5), and in 20 of them (71%) before attaining adult height. In 11 cases puberty was induced or completed by hormonal therapy. Patients with POI were significantly shorter at menarche, but adult heights did not differ from non-POI females. Patients with POI had more often primary adrenocortical insufficiency (93% vs 58%, P = 0.017) and ovarian antibodies (81% vs 30%, P=0.003) compared to those with normal ovarian function (n = 12).
POI developed in the majority of patients with APECED, often before or shortly after menarche. Timely commencement of hormonal replacement therapy is important to ensure optimal pubertal development and growth. The possibility of fertility preservation before development of POI in APECED patients should be further studied.
Susanne Thiele, Ralf Werner, Annika Stubbe, Olaf Hiort, and Wolfgang Hoeppner
Hypophosphataemic rickets (HR) comprise a clinically and genetically heterogeneous group of conditions, defined by renal-tubular phosphate wasting and consecutive loss of bone mineralisation. X-linked hypophosphataemia (XLH) is the most common form, caused by inactivating dominant mutations in PHEX, a gene encompassing 22 exons located at Xp22.1. XLH is treatable by anti-Fibroblast Growth Factor 23 antibody, while for other forms of HR such as therapy may not be indicated. Therefore, a genetic differentiation of HR is recommended.
To develop and validate a next-generation sequencing panel for HR with special focus on PHEX.
Design and methods:
We designed an AmpliSeq gene panel for the IonTorrent PGM next-generation platform for PHEX and ten other HR-related genes. For validation of PHEX sequencing 50 DNA-samples from XLH-patients, in whom 42 different mutations in PHEX and 1 structural variation have been proven before, were blinded, anonymised and investigated with the NGS panel. In addition, we analyzed one known homozygous DMP1 mutation and two samples of HR-patients, where no pathogenic PHEX mutation had been detected by conventional sequencing.
The panel detected all 42 pathogenic missense/nonsense/splice-site/indel PHEX-mutations and in one the known homozygous DMP1 mutation. In the remaining two patients, we revealed a somatic mosaicism of a PHEX mutation in one; as well as two variations in DMP1 and a very rare compound heterozygous variation in ENPP1 in the second patient.
This developed NGS panel is a reliable tool with high sensitivity and specificity for the diagnosis of XLH and related forms of HR.
Daan M van Velzen, Nienke M Nota, Suat Simsek, Elfi B Conemans, Guy T’Sjoen, and Martin den Heijer
Transgender individuals sometimes report a lack of physical change during hormone treatment, such as alterations in muscle tone or fat distribution. Identifying characteristics of this subgroup could be a step toward individualizing hormone therapy in transgender individuals. Therefore, we study the variation of changes in body composition and characteristics associated with a lack of change.
Design and methods:
Body composition measures were recorded in 323 transmen and 288 transwomen at every visit from the start of hormone therapy to a maximum of 24 months follow-up. Absence of change was defined as transmen with a decrease in lean body mass or transwomen with a decrease in fat percentage.
A lack of change at 24 months was observed in 19 of 94 (20.2%) transmen and in 9 of 96 (9.4%) transwomen. The risk of not achieving change in body composition was related to lower testosterone levels and less suppression of LH in transmen (OR: 0.67, 95% CI: 0.48–0.94 per SD increase in testosterone and OR: 1.36, 95% CI: 1.01–1.83 per SD increase in LH).
There is a large variation in body composition changes during hormone therapy, with a substantial proportion of individuals with no measurable effects. In transmen, serum testosterone and LH were associated with a lack of change, but serum hormone levels were not associated with body composition changes in transwomen. The results provide a rationale for individualizing hormone therapy in transmen, by considering individual effects rather than solely relying on a standardized dosage of hormone therapy.