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Giulia Gava, Ilaria Mancini, Stefania Alvisi, Renato Seracchioli, and Maria Cristina Meriggiola

Objective

The impact of different combinations of long-term gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) in transwomen (TW) is largely unknown. To assess the effects of 5-year administration of cyproterone acetate (CPA) or leuprolide acetate (Leu) plus transdermal or oral estradiol (E).

Design

Cohort study based on prospectively collected data. Fifty TW received 50 mg CPA daily orally (n = 25; CPA+E group) or 3.75 mg Leu i.m. monthly (n = 25; Leu+E group) with 1 or 2 mg E daily for 5 years. Reproductive hormones, biochemical and anthropometric parameters, body composition and bone mineral density (BMD) were assessed.

Results

LH, FSH and total testosterone levels were similarly and significantly suppressed in both groups. Prolactin increased only in the CPA+E group (P = 0.002). Fasting insulin resistance and glucose progressively increased in the CPA+E group only (treatment × time effect P = 0.002 and P = 0.043, respectively). Total cholesterol increased more in the Leu+E group than in the CPA+E group and HDL-cholesterol decreased in the CPA+E group (time × treatment interaction effect, P = 0.007). Lumbar and total body BMD increased in both groups after 3 years. No serious adverse events were recorded.

Conclusions

Both regimens were effective in suppression of T production. CPA+E worsened the metabolic profile with a slight increase in PRL levels. All subjects presented an increase in BMD regardless of treatment. These preliminary data could have clinical implications in the choice of GAHT, in particular for those TW not requiring gender-affirming surgery.

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Agnieszka Łebek-Szatańska, Karolina M Nowak, and Lucyna Papierska

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F Albarel, I Pellegrini, H Rahabi, C Baccou, L Gonin, C Rochette, M Vermalle, T Cuny, F Castinetti, and T Brue

Introduction

The low prevalence of pituitary diseases makes patient autonomy crucial, and self-management programs should be more common.

Objectives

To assess the efficacy of an education program for patients with pituitary diseases in terms of patients’ quality of life, satisfaction and goal attainment.

Design and methods

Adult patients with pituitary disorders were recruited in a tertiary referral center and chose at least three of eight possible sessions on various topics, from disease management to psychosocial issues. Patients were included if they attended at least three sessions between 2012 and 2016 and completed the initial, final, and follow-up questionnaires. Data on quality of life (SF36), satisfaction and goal attainment were analyzed.

Results

Fifty-three patients were included (33 women; mean age, 53.5 years). There were a significant quality of life improvements in terms of physical and psychic limitation scores at the final assessment that persisted at follow-up evaluation. Most patients reached their objectives, especially those on sharing experiences and improving autonomy and self-confidence. More than half set new objectives at the end of the program, the most popular one being to reinforce their knowledge of their pituitary disease, its evolution and treatment (17.1% of patients). The mean overall satisfaction score was 3.75/4. At follow-up evaluation, patients reported improved self-management of pituitary disease (3.6/5) and improved self-efficacy (3.8/5).

Conclusion

Individualizing the educational objectives of patients with pituitary disease improves the way they live with their disease. If confirmed in other cohorts, this approach could become the gold standard for education programs in rare endocrine diseases.

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Minna Soinio, Anna-Kaarina Luukkonen, Marko Seppänen, Jukka Kemppainen, Janne Seppänen, Juha-Pekka Pienimäki, Helena Leijon, Tiina Vesterinen, Johanna Arola, Eila Lantto, Semi Helin, Ilkka Tikkanen, Saara Metso, Tuomas Mirtti, Ilkka Heiskanen, Leena Norvio, Mirja Tiikkainen, Tuula Tikkanen, Timo Sane, Matti Välimäki, Celso E Gomez-Sanchez, Ilkka Pörsti, Pirjo Nuutila, Pasi I Nevalainen, and Niina Matikainen

Objective

Endocrine Society guidelines recommend adrenal venous sampling (AVS) in primary aldosteronism (PA) if adrenalectomy is considered. We tested whether functional imaging of adrenal cortex with 11C-metomidate (11C-MTO) could offer a noninvasive alternative to AVS in the subtype classification of PA.

Design

We prospectively recruited 58 patients with confirmed PA who were eligible for adrenal surgery.

Methods

Subjects underwent AVS and 11C-MTO-PET without dexamethasone pretreatment in random order. The lateralization of 11C-MTO-PET and adrenal CT were compared with AVS in all subjects and in a prespecified adrenalectomy subgroup in which the diagnosis was confirmed with immunohistochemical staining for CYP11B2.

Results

In the whole study population, the concordance of AVS and 11C-MTO-PET was 51% and did not differ from that of AVS and adrenal CT (53%). The concordance of AVS and 11C-MTO-PET was 55% in unilateral and 44% in bilateral PA. In receiver operating characteristics analysis, the maximum standardized uptake value ratio of 1.16 in 11C-MTO-PET had an AUC of 0.507 (P = n.s.) to predict allocation to adrenalectomy or medical therapy with sensitivity of 55% and specificity of 44%. In the prespecified adrenalectomy subgroup, AVS and 11C-MTO-PET were concordant in 10 of 19 subjects with CYP11B2-positive adenoma and in 6 of 10 with CYP11B2-positivity without an adenoma.

Conclusions

The concordance of 11C-MTO-PET with AVS was clinically suboptimal, and did not outperform adrenal CT. In a subgroup with CYP11B2-positive adenoma, 11C-MTO-PET identified 53% of cases. 11C-MTO-PET appeared to be inferior to AVS for subtype classification of PA.

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Alessia Cozzolino, Tiziana Feola, Ilaria Simonelli, Giulia Puliani, Valeria Hasenmajer, Marianna Minnetti, Elisa Giannetta, Daniele Gianfrilli, Patrizio Pasqualetti, Andrea Lenzi, and Andrea M Isidori

Objective

Neurosurgery is the first-line treatment for acromegaly. Whether metabolic disorders are reversible after neurosurgery is still debated. The meta-analysis aimed to address the following questions: (i) Does neurosurgery affect glycolipid metabolism? (ii) Are these effects related to disease control or follow-up length?

Design

A meta-analysis and systematic review of the literature.

Methods

Three reviewers searched databases until August 2019 for prospective trials reporting glycometabolic outcomes after neurosurgery. Three other extracted outcomes, all assessed the risk of bias.

Results

Twenty studies were included. Neurosurgery significantly reduced fasting plasma glucose (FPG) (effect size (ES): −0.57 mmol/L, 95% CI: −0.82 to −0.31; P < 0.001), glucose load (ES: −1.10 mmol/L, 95% CI: −1.66 to −0.53; P < 0.001), glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1c) (ES: −0.28%, 95% CI: −0.42 to −0.14; P < 0.001), fasting plasma insulin (FPI) (ES: −10.53 mU/L, 95% CI: −14.54 to −6.51; P < 0.001), homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) (ES: −1.98, 95% CI: −3.24 to −0.72; P = 0.002), triglycerides (TGDs) (ES: −0.28 mmol/L, 95% CI: −0.36 to −0.20; P < 0.001) and LDL-cholesterol (LDLC) (ES: −0.23 mmol/L, 95% CI: −0.45 to −0.02 mmol/L); P = 0.030) and increased HDL-cholesterol (HDLC) (ES: 0.21 mmol/L, 95% CI: 0.14 to 0.28; P < 0.001). Meta-regression analysis showed that follow-up length – not disease control – had a significant effect on FPG, with the greatest reduction in the shortest follow-up (beta = 0.012, s.e. = 0.003; P = 0.001).

Conclusions

Neurosurgery improves metabolism with a significant decrease in FPG, glucose load, HbA1c, FPI, HOMA-IR, TGDs, and LDLC and increase in HDLC. The effect on FPG seems to be more related to follow-up length than to disease control.

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Emily Cottrell, Claudia P Cabrera, Miho Ishida, Sumana Chatterjee, James Greening, Neil Wright, Artur Bossowski, Leo Dunkel, Asma Deeb, Iman Al Basiri, Stephen J Rose, Avril Mason, Susan Bint, Joo Wook Ahn, Vivian Hwa, Louise A Metherell, Gudrun E Moore, and Helen L Storr

Objective

Copy number variation (CNV) has been associated with idiopathic short stature, small for gestational age and Silver-Russell syndrome (SRS). It has not been extensively investigated in growth hormone insensitivity (GHI; short stature, IGF-1 deficiency and normal/high GH) or previously in IGF-1 insensitivity (short stature, high/normal GH and IGF-1).

Design and methods

Array comparative genomic hybridisation was performed with ~60 000 probe oligonucleotide array in GHI (n = 53) and IGF-1 insensitivity (n = 10) subjects. Published literature, mouse models, DECIPHER CNV tracks, growth associated GWAS loci and pathway enrichment analyses were used to identify key biological pathways/novel candidate growth genes within the CNV regions.

Results

Both cohorts were enriched for class 3–5 CNVs (7/53 (13%) GHI and 3/10 (30%) IGF-1 insensitivity patients). Interestingly, 6/10 (60%) CNV subjects had diagnostic/associated clinical features of SRS. 5/10 subjects (50%) had CNVs previously reported in suspected SRS: 1q21 (n = 2), 12q14 (n = 1) deletions and Xp22 (n = 1), Xq26 (n = 1) duplications. A novel 15q11 deletion, previously associated with growth failure but not SRS/GHI was identified. Bioinformatic analysis identified 45 novel candidate growth genes, 15 being associated with growth in GWAS. The WNT canonical pathway was enriched in the GHI cohort and CLOCK was identified as an upstream regulator in the IGF-1 insensitivity cohorts.

Conclusions

Our cohort was enriched for low frequency CNVs. Our study emphasises the importance of CNV testing in GHI and IGF-1 insensitivity patients, particularly GHI subjects with SRS features. Functional experimental evidence is now required to validate the novel candidate growth genes, interactions and biological pathways identified.

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Anna-Maria Eleftheriadou, Sebastian Mehl, Kostja Renko, Rega H Kasim, Jasmin-Annabelle Schaefer, Waldemar B Minich, and Lutz Schomburg

Objective

Iodide transport across thyrocytes constitutes a critical step for thyroid hormone biosynthesis, mediated mainly by the basolateral sodium-iodide-symporter (NIS (SLC5A5)) and the apical anion exchanger pendrin (PDS (SLC26A4)). Both transmembrane proteins have been described as autoantigens in thyroid disease, yet the reports on autoantibody (aAb) prevalence and diagnostic usefulness are conflicting. Reasons for the inconclusive findings may be small study groups and principle differences in the technologies used.

Design

We decided to re-evaluate this important issue by establishing novel non-radioactive tests using full-length antigens and comparable protocols, and analyzing a large cohort of thyroid patients (n = 323) and control samples (n = 400).

Methods

NIS and PDS were recombinantly expressed as fusion protein with firefly luciferase (Luc). Stably transfected HEK293 cells were used as reproducible source of the autoantigens.

Results

Recombinant NIS-Luc showed iodide transport activity, indicating successful expression and correct processing. Commercial antibodies yielded dose-dependent responses in the newly established assays. Reproducibility of assay signals from patient sera was verified with respect to linearity, stability and absence of matrix effects. Prevalence of PDS-aAb was similar in thyroid patients and controls (7.7% vs 5.0%). NIS-aAb were more prevalent in patients than controls (7.7% vs 1.8%), especially in Graves’ Disease (12.3%). Neither NIS-aAb nor PDS-aAb concentrations were related to TPO-aAb or TSH-receptor-aAb concentrations, or to serum zinc or selenium status.

Conclusions

Our data highlight a potential relevance of autoimmunity against NIS for thyroid disease, whereas an assessment of PDS-aAb in thyroid patients seems not to be of diagnostic value (yet).

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Olaf M Dekkers and Rolf H H Groenwold

The name of the study should properly reflect the actual conduct and analysis of the study. This short paper provides guidance on how to properly name the study design. The first distinction is between a trial (intervention given to patients to study its effect) and an observational study. For observational studies, it should further be decided whether it is cross-sectional or whether follow-up time is taken into account (cohort or case–control study). The distinction prospective-retrospective has two disadvantages: prospective is often seen as marker of higher quality, which is not necessarily true; there is no unifying definition that makes a proper distinction between retrospective and prospective possible.

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Juho Kärkinen, Päivi J Miettinen, Taneli Raivio, and Matti Hero

Objective:

To describe the etiology of severe short stature in the Helsinki University Hospital district covering a population of 1.2 million that is subject to frequent growth monitoring and screening rules during childhood.

Design:

Retrospective cohort study.

Methods:

We identified all subjects born 1990 or later with a height SD score <−3, after the age of 3 years, from the Helsinki University Hospital district growth database. A total of 785 subjects (376 females and 409 males) fulfilled our inclusion criteria; we reviewed their medical records and growth data and report their underlying diagnoses.

Results:

A pathological cause for short stature was diagnosed in 76% of the girls and 71% of the boys (P = NS). Syndromes were the most numerous pathological cause (n = 160; 20%), followed by organ disorders (n = 127; 16%), growth hormone deficiency (GHD, n = 94; 12%), SGA without catch-up growth (n = 73; 9%), and skeletal dysplasias (n = 57; 7%). Idiopathic short stature (ISS) was diagnosed in 210 (27%) subjects. The probability of growth-related pathology, particularly of a syndrome or skeletal dysplasia, increased with the shorter height SD score and the greater deviation from the target height. Sitting height to height SDS was increased in subjects with ISS, GHD, and SGA (all P < 0.01).

Conclusions:

Height <−3 SDS after 3 years of age usually results from a pathological cause and should be thoroughly investigated in specialized health care. The chance of finding a specific etiology increased with the severity of short stature, and the mismatch with target height.

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Athanasia Stoupa, Ghada Al Hage Chehade, Dulanjalee Kariyawasam, Celine Tohier, Christine Bole-Feysot, Patrick Nitschke, Helene Thibault, Marie-Laure Jullie, Michel Polak, and Aurore Carré

Background:

Among patients with congenital hypothyroidism, 35% have dyshormonogenesis (DH) with thyroid gland in situ with or without goiter. The majority of DH cases are due to mutations in genes involved in thyroid hormone production as TG, TPO, SLC5A5/NIS, SLC26A4/PDS, IYD/DEHAL1, DUOX2, and DUOXA2, and are usually inherited on an autosomal recessive basis. Most previously reported cases of fetal hypothyroidism and goiter were related to TG or TPO mutations and recently DUOXA2.

Patient:

In a male patient with antenatal goiter treated with intraamniotic levothyroxine injections, whose long-term follow-up is described in detail, two novel NIS mutations were detected. Mutations of NIS were located in exon 1 (c.52G>A, p.G18R) and exon 13 (c.1546C>T, p.R516X), each mutation was inherited from parents, who are healthy carriers. The p.G18R mutation affecting the first transmembrane domain of the protein can be responsible for deficient iodide uptake. However, the second is a nonsense mutation leading probably to mRNA degradation. In addition, the patient has undergone a thyroidectomy and we have studied the thyroid tissue. The thyroid histology showed heterogeneity with large follicles, epithelial hyperplasia and many areas of fibrosis. Immunohistochemistry with NIS specific antibody showed NIS staining at the basolateral plasma membrane of the thyrocytes.

Conclusions:

We report the first case of fetal goitrous hypothyroidism due to two novel NIS mutations with access to thyroid tissue of the patient, specific histology studies and long-term follow-up. This case expands our knowledge and provides further insights on molecular causes of fetal goiter in humans.