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Victoria Zeghbi Cochenski Borba, Tatiana Lemos Costa, Carolina Aguiar Moreira and Cesar Luiz Boguszewski

Objective

This paper reviews the main mechanisms, diagnostic criteria, treatment options and available data on sarcopenia in endocrine and non-endocrine disorders. The literature notes the presence of sarcopenia as a comorbid condition or a complication of another clinical situation and not a disease that only affects elderly patients.

Method

We performed a literature review, focusing on the following: mechanisms related to sarcopenia in elderly patients, and sarcopenia as it presents in the context of chronic and endocrine diseases; diagnostic tools and methods; aspects of sarcopenia and treatment options specific to chronic diseases and endocrine disorders respectively.

Results

Sarcopenia in chronic and endocrine disorders shares many mechanisms with sarcopenia affecting elderly patients, but certain diseases can have a predominant aspect that leads to sarcopenia. The prevalence of sarcopenia varies, depending on different diagnostic criteria, from around 12 to 60% in chronic illnesses and 15 to 90% in endocrine disorders. The interplay between sarcopenia, chronic diseases and elderly patients requires further study, to clarify the impact of each, in terms of prognosis and mortality.

Conclusion

Awareness of the presentation of sarcopenia in the context of other diseases and ages (and not just the elderly) is fundamental to ensure that preventive measures can be deployed.

Restricted access

Yujiro Nakano, Takanobu Yoshimoto, Ryo Watanabe, Masanori Murakami, Tatsuya Fukuda, Kazutaka Saito, Yasuhisa Fujii, Takumi Akashi, Toshihiro Tanaka, Tetsuya Yamada, Mitsuhide Naruse and Yoshihiro Ogawa

Objective: The pathophysiology of aldosterone-producing adenomas (APA) has been intensively investigated using genetic and epigenetic approaches. However, the role of microRNAs (miRNAs) in APA is not fully understood. The present study profiled miRNAs in APAs as an exploratory approach to elucidate their pathophysiological roles in APAs.

Design: Tissues of APAs and other adrenocortical adenomas were obtained from patients who underwent adrenalectomy.

Methods: Candidate miRNAs differentially detected from samples were examined by whole miRNA sequencing. The expression of candidate miRNAs in APA tissues were further validated by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). Further, differential miRNA expression between APAs with and without KCNJ5 somatic mutations was examined. Prediction of miRNA target genes was performed by bioinformatics analysis. For specific miRNAs, correlation analysis between the levels of their target genes and CYP11B2 was analyzed in APA tissues.

Results: Our study determined differential expression of six miRNAs in APA or APA with KCNJ5 mutations. We further demonstrated that miR299 levels were negatively correlated with mRNA levels of CACNB2, which encodes the beta-subunit of the L-type calcium channel. Additionally, we found significant correlations among miR299, CACNB2, and CYP11B2 levels in APA tissues.

Conclusions: Our study suggests the possible pathophysiological involvement of specific miRNAs in calcium signaling and aldosterone hypersecretion in APAs. Further studies, including in vitro analyses, are required to clarify these findings.

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Alfredo Berruti, Rossella Libè, Marta Laganà, Hester Ettaieb, Mohamad Anas Sukkari, Jérôme Bertherat, Richard A Feelders, Salvatore Grisanti, Jérôme Cartry, Gherardo Mazziotti, Sandra Sigala, Eric Baudin, Harm Haak, Mouhammed Amir Habra and Massimo Terzolo

Introduction

Adrenocortical carcinoma (ACC) is a rare cancer that commonly spreads to the liver, lungs and lymph nodes. Bone metastases are infrequent.

Objective

The aim of this report was to describe the clinical characteristics, survival perspective, prognostic factors and frequency of adverse skeletal-related events (SREs) in patients with ACC who developed bone metastasis.

Methods

This is a retrospective, observational, multicenter, multinational study of patients diagnosed with bone metastases from ACC who were treated and followed up in three European countries (France, Italy and The Netherlands) and one center in the United States.

Results

Data of 156 patients were captured. The median overall survival was 11 months. SREs occurred in 47% of patients: 17% bone fractures, 17% spinal cord compression, 1% hypercalcemia, 12% developed more than one SRE. In multivariate analysis, cortisol hypersecretion was the only prognostic factor significantly associated with a higher mortality risk (hazard ratio (HR) 2.24, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.19–4.23, P = 0.013) and with the development of a SREs (of border line significance). The administration of antiresorptive therapies (bisphosphonates and denosumab) was associated with a lower risk of death, even if not significant, and their survival benefit appeared confined in patients attaining serum mitotane levels within the therapeutic range.

Conclusion

Bone metastases in ACC patients are associated with poor prognosis and high risk of SREs. Cortisol hypersecretion was the only prognostic factor suggesting a potential benefit from antisecretory medications. The therapeutic role of bisphosphonates and denosumab to improve patient outcome deserves to be tested in a prospective clinical trial.

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Yamina Dassa, Hélène Crosnier, Mathilde Chevignard, Magali Viaud, Claire Personnier, Isabelle Flechtner, Philippe Meyer, Stéphanie Puget, Nathalie Boddaert, Sylvain Breton and Michel Polak

Objectives

Childhood traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a public health issue. Our objectives were to determine the prevalence of permanent pituitary hormone deficiency and to detect the emergence of other pituitary dysfunctions or central precocious puberty several years after severe TBI.

Design

Follow-up at least 5 years post severe TBI of a prospective longitudinal study.

Patients

Overall, 66/87 children, who had endocrine evaluation 1 year post severe TBI, were included (24 with pituitary dysfunction 1 year post TBI).

Main outcome measures

In all children, the pituitary hormones basal levels were assessed at least 5 years post TBI. Growth hormone (GH) stimulation tests were performed 3–4 years post TBI in children with GH deficiency (GHD) 1 year post TBI and in all children with low height velocity (<−1 DS) or low IGF-1 (<−2 DS). Central precocious puberty (CPP) was confirmed by GnRH stimulation test.

Results

Overall, 61/66 children were followed up 7 (5–10) years post TBI (median; (range)); 17/61 children had GHD 1 year post TBI, and GHD was confirmed in 5/17 patients. For one boy, with normal pituitary function 1 year post TBI, GHD was diagnosed 6.5 years post TBI. 4/61 patients developed CPP, 5.7 (2.4–6.1) years post-TBI. Having a pituitary dysfunction 1 year post TBI was significantly associated with pituitary dysfunction or CPP more than 5 years post TBI.

Conclusion

Severe TBI in childhood can lead to permanent pituitary dysfunction; GHD and CPP may appear after many years. We recommend systematic hormonal assessment in children 1 year after severe TBI and a prolonged monitoring of growth and pubertal maturation. Recommendations should be elaborated for the families and treating physicians.

Open access

Julia Otten, Mats Ryberg, Caroline Mellberg, Tomas Andersson, Elin Chorell, Bernt Lindahl, Christel Larsson, Jens Juul Holst and Tommy Olsson

Objective: To investigate how weight loss by different diets impacts on postprandial levels of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP), and glucagon.

Methods: In this single-centre, parallel group 2-year trial, 70 healthy postmenopausal obese women were randomized to the Paleolithic diet or a healthy control diet based on Nordic Nutrition Recommendations. Both diets were without calorie restriction. The primary outcome was the change in fat mass. Here, secondary analyses on GLP-1, GIP, and glucagon measured during an OGTT are described.

Results: In the Paleolithic diet group, mean weight loss compared to baseline was 11% at 6 months, and 10% at 24 months. In the control diet group, mean weight loss was 6% after 6 and 24 months (P = 0.0001 and P = 0.049 for the comparison between groups at 6 and 24 months respectively). Compared to baseline, the mean incremental area under the curve (iAUC) for GLP-1 increased by 34% and 45% after 6 and 24 months in the Paleolithic diet group, and increased by 59% after 24 months in the control diet group. The mean iAUC for GIP increased only in the Paleolithic diet group. The AUC for glucagon increased during the first 6 months in both groups. The fasting glucagon increase correlated with the β-hydroxybutyrate increase.

Conclusions: Weight loss caused an increase in postprandial GLP-1 levels and a further rise occurred during weight maintenance. Postprandial GIP levels increased only after the Paleolithic diet. Reduced postprandial glucagon suppression may be caused by a catabolic state.

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Tulay Guran, Gozde Yesil, Serap Turan, Zeynep Atay, Emine Bozkurtlar, AghaRza Aghayev, Sinem Gul, Ilker Tinay, Basak Aru, Sema Arslan, M Kutay Koroglu, Feriha Ercan, Gulderen Y Demirel, Funda S Eren, Betul Karademir and Abdullah Bereket

Context

Most of the knowledge on the factors involved in human sexual development stems from studies of rare cases with disorders of sex development. Here, we have described a novel 46, XY complete gonadal dysgenesis syndrome caused by homozygous variants in PPP2R3C gene. This gene encodes B″gamma regulatory subunit of the protein phosphatase 2A (PP2A), which is a serine/threonine phosphatase involved in the phospho-regulation processes of most mammalian cell types. PPP2R3C gene is most abundantly expressed in testis in humans, while its function was hitherto unknown.

Patients and methods

Four girls from four unrelated families with 46, XY complete gonadal dysgenesis were studied using exome or Sanger sequencing of PPP2R3C gene. In total, four patients and their heterozygous parents were investigated for clinical, laboratory, immunohistochemical and molecular characteristics.

Results

We have identified three different homozygous PPP2R3C variants, c.308T>C (p.L103P), c.578T>C (p.L193S) and c.1049T>C (p.F350S), in four girls with 46, XY complete gonadal dysgenesis. Patients also manifested a unique syndrome of extragonadal anomalies, including typical facial gestalt, low birth weight, myopathy, rod and cone dystrophy, anal atresia, omphalocele, sensorineural hearing loss, dry and scaly skin, skeletal abnormalities, renal agenesis and neuromotor delay. We have shown a decreased SOX9-Phospho protein expression in the dysgenetic gonads of the patients with homozygous PPP2R3C variants suggesting impaired SOX9 signaling in the pathogenesis of gonadal dysgenesis. Heterozygous males presented with abnormal sperm morphology and impaired fertility.

Conclusion

Our findings suggest that PPP2R3C protein is involved in the ontogeny of multiple organs, especially critical for testis development and spermatogenesis. PPPR3C provides insight into pathophysiology, as well as emerging as a potential therapeutic target for male infertility.

Free access

Frederic Castinetti, Thierry Brue and Oskar Ragnarsson

Treatment of Cushing’s disease (CD) is one of the most challenging tasks in endocrinology. The first-line treatment, transsphenoidal pituitary surgery, is associated with a high failure rate and a high prevalence of recurrence. Re-operation is associated with an even higher rate of a failure and recurrence. There are three main second-line treatments for CD – pituitary radiation therapy (RT), bilateral adrenalectomy and chronic cortisol-lowering medical treatment. All these treatments have their limitations. While bilateral adrenalectomy provides permanent cure of the hypercortisolism in all patients, the unavoidable chronic adrenal insufficiency and the risk of development of Nelson syndrome are of concern. Chronic cortisol-lowering medical treatment is not efficient in all patients and side effects are often a limiting factor. RT is efficient for approximately two-thirds of all patients with CD. However, the high prevalence of pituitary insufficiency is of concern as well as potential optic nerve damage, development of cerebrovascular disease and secondary brain tumours. Thus, when it comes to decide appropriate treatment for patients with CD, who have either failed to achieve remission with pituitary surgery, or patients with recurrence, the pros and cons of all second-line treatment options must be considered.

Restricted access

Wouter Thomas Zandee, Richard A Feelders, Daan Smit Duijzentkunst, Johannes Hofland, R. Mick Metselaar, Rogier A. Oldenburg, Anne van Linge, Boen L.r. Kam, Jaap Teunissen, Esther Korpershoek, Johanna Hendriks, Huda Abusaris, Cleo Slagter, Gaston J.h. Franssen, Tessa Brabander and Wouter de Herder

Objectives – Inoperable or metastatic paragangliomas (PGL) and malignant pheochromocytomas (PCC) are rare tumours with limited options for systemic treatment. Aim of this study was to assess the safety and efficacy of the radiolabelled somatostatin analogue [177LutetiumDOTA0-Tyr3]octreotate (177Lu-DOTATATE) for the treatment of PGLs and PCCs.

Methods – Patients with histologically proven inoperable or malignant PGLs and PCCs treated with 177Lu-DOTATATE at our centre were retrospectively analysed. Patients were treated with up to four cycles of 177Lu-DOTATATE with an intended dose of 7.4 Gb per cycle. Response was assessed with use of RECIST 1.1

Results – Thirty patients were included: 17 with parasympathetic, 10 with sympathetic PGLs and 3 with PCCs. Grade 3/4 subacute haematotoxicity occurred in 6 (20%) of patients. A reversible subacute adverse event due to cardiac failure following possible catecholamine release occurred in two patients. Best tumour response was partial response in 7 (23%) and stable disease in 20 (67%), whereas 3 (10%) patients had progressive disease. In 20 patients with baseline disease progression, tumour control was observed in 17 (85%); the median progression free survival was 91 months in patients with parasympathetic PGLs, 13 months in patients with sympathetic PGLs and 10 months in patients with metastatic PCCs.

Conclusion – This study suggests that PRRT with 177Lu-DOTATATE is a safe and effective treatment option for patients with inoperable or malignant PGL and PCC.

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Philippe Chanson, Alexandre Dormoy and Olaf Dekkers

Surgery is the treatment of choice for non-functioning pituitary macroadenomas (NFPAs). In cases of postoperative remnant growth or tumor recurrence, radiotherapy (RT) can be considered. The role of RT in the postoperative management of NFPAs is still debated. The main arguments against routine use of RT are the lack of randomized controlled trials, the use of clinically irrelevant endpoints in most studies on RT, the benign character of the condition, the potential for side-effects of RT, and the option to apply RT at a later stage. However, because of its excellent efficacy in inhibiting tumor growth, reducing tumor volume, and improving any existing visual defects, and as its side effects seem to be limited compared to the benefits provided, RT keeps a place in the management of NFPAs when a tumor remnant persists, particularly if it is invasive and displays high proliferation markers, if surveillance shows a relevant increase in tumor volume, or if the tumor is close to the optic chiasm. The size of the remnant, its vicinity with the optic pathways, and the potential risk to healthy surrounding tissues need to be considered when deciding on a RT procedure.

Free access

Paul Lips, Kevin D Cashman, Christel Lamberg-Allardt, Heike Annette Bischoff-Ferrari, Barbara Obermayer-Pietsch, Maria Luisa Bianchi, Jan Stepan, Ghada El-Hajj Fuleihan and Roger Bouillon

Vitamin D deficiency (serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) <50 nmol/L or 20 ng/mL) is common in Europe and the Middle East. It occurs in <20% of the population in Northern Europe, in 30–60% in Western, Southern and Eastern Europe and up to 80% in Middle East countries. Severe deficiency (serum 25(OH)D <30 nmol/L or 12 ng/mL) is found in >10% of Europeans. The European Calcified Tissue Society (ECTS) advises that the measurement of serum 25(OH)D be standardized, for example, by the Vitamin D Standardization Program. Risk groups include young children, adolescents, pregnant women, older people (especially the institutionalized) and non-Western immigrants. Consequences of vitamin D deficiency include mineralization defects and lower bone mineral density causing fractures. Extra-skeletal consequences may be muscle weakness, falls and acute respiratory infection, and are the subject of large ongoing clinical trials. The ECTS advises to improve vitamin D status by food fortification and the use of vitamin D supplements in risk groups. Fortification of foods by adding vitamin D to dairy products, bread and cereals can improve the vitamin D status of the whole population, but quality assurance monitoring is needed to prevent intoxication. Specific risk groups such as infants and children up to 3 years, pregnant women, older persons and non-Western immigrants should routinely receive vitamin D supplements. Future research should include genetic studies to better define individual vulnerability for vitamin D deficiency, and Mendelian randomization studies to address the effect of vitamin D deficiency on long-term non-skeletal outcomes such as cancer.