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J Thevenon, A Bourredjem, L Faivre, C Cardot-Bauters, A Calender, M Le Bras, S Giraud, P Niccoli, M F Odou, F Borson-Chazot, A Barlier, C Lombard-Bohas, E Clauser, A Tabarin, E Pasmant, O Chabre, E Castermans, P Ruszniewski, J Bertherat, B Delemer, S Christin-Maitre, A Beckers, I Guilhem, V Rohmer, B Goichot, P Caron, E Baudin, P Chanson, L Groussin, H Du Boullay, G Weryha, P Lecomte, F Schillo, H Bihan, F Archambeaud, V Kerlan, N Bourcigaux, J M Kuhn, B Vergès, M Rodier, M Renard, J L Sadoul, C Binquet and P Goudet

Background

MEN1, which is secondary to the mutation of the MEN1 gene, is a rare autosomal-dominant disease that predisposes mutation carriers to endocrine tumors. Most studies demonstrated the absence of direct genotype-phenotype correlations. The existence of a higher risk of death in the Groupe d'étude des Tumeurs Endocrines-cohort associated with a mutation in the JunD interacting domain suggests heterogeneity across families in disease expressivity. This study aims to assess the existence of modifying genetic factors by estimating the intrafamilial correlations and heritability of the six main tumor types in MEN1.

Methods

The study included 797 patients from 265 kindred and studied seven phenotypic criteria: parathyroid and pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) and pituitary, adrenal, bronchial, and thymic (thNET) tumors and the presence of metastasis. Intrafamilial correlations and heritability estimates were calculated from family tree data using specific validated statistical analysis software.

Results

Intrafamilial correlations were significant and decreased along parental degrees distance for pituitary, adrenal and thNETs. The heritability of these three tumor types was consistently strong and significant with 64% (s.e.m.=0.13; P<0.001) for pituitary tumor, 65% (s.e.m.=0.21; P<0.001) for adrenal tumors, and 97% (s.e.m.=0.41; P=0.006) for thNETs.

Conclusion

The present study shows the existence of modifying genetic factors for thymus, adrenal, and pituitary MEN1 tumor types. The identification of at-risk subgroups of individuals within cohorts is the first step toward personalization of care. Next generation sequencing on this subset of tumors will help identify the molecular basis of MEN1 variable genetic expressivity.

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Géraldine Vitellius, Séverine Trabado, Christine Hoeffel, Jérôme Bouligand, Antoine Bennet, Frederic Castinetti, Bénédicte Decoudier, Anne Guiochon-Mantel, Marc Lombes, Brigitte Delemer and investigators of the MUTA-GR Study

Background

Recently discovered mutations of NR3C1 gene, encoding for the GR, in patients with glucocorticoid resistance and bilateral adrenal incidentalomas prompted us to investigate whether GR mutations might be associated with adrenal hyperplasia.

Objective

The multicenter French Clinical Research Program (Muta-GR) was set up to determine the prevalence of GR mutations and polymorphisms in patients harboring bilateral adrenal incidentalomas associated with hypertension and/or biological hypercortisolism without clinical Cushing’s signs.

Results

One hundred patients were included in whom NR3C1 sequencing revealed five original heterozygous GR mutations that impaired GR signaling in vitro. Mutated patients presented with mild glucocorticoid resistance defined as elevated urinary free cortisol (1.7 ± 0.7 vs 0.9 ± 0.8 upper limit of normal range, P = 0.006), incomplete 1 mg dexamethasone suppression test without suppressed 8-AM adrenocorticotrophin levels (30.9 ± 31.2 vs 16.2 ± 17.5 pg/mL) compared to the non-mutated patients. Potassium and aldosterone levels were lower in mutated patients (3.6 ± 0.2 vs 4.1 ± 0.5 mmol/L, P = 0.01, and 17.3 ± 9.9 vs 98.6 ± 115.4 pg/mL, P = 0.0011, respectively) without elevated renin levels, consistent with pseudohypermineralocorticism. Ex vivo characterization of mutated patients’ fibroblasts demonstrated GR haploinsufficiency as revealed by below-normal glucocorticoid induction of FKBP5 gene expression. There was no association between GR polymorphisms and adrenal hyperplasia in this cohort, except an over-representation of BclI polymorphism.

Conclusion

The 5% prevalence of heterozygous NR3C1 mutations discovered in our series is higher than initially thought and encourages GR mutation screening in patients with adrenal incidentalomas to unambiguously differentiate from Cushing’s states and to optimize personalized follow-up.

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Elena Valassi, Holger Franz, Thierry Brue, Richard A Feelders, Romana Netea-Maier, Stylianos Tsagarakis, Susan M Webb, Maria Yaneva, Martin Reincke, Michael Droste, Irina Komerdus, Dominique Maiter, Darko Kastelan, Philippe Chanson, Marija Pfeifer, Christian J Strasburger, Miklós Tóth, Olivier Chabre, Michal Krsek, Carmen Fajardo, Marek Bolanowski, Alicia Santos, Peter J Trainer, John A H Wass, Antoine Tabarin and for the ERCUSYN Study Group

Background

Surgery is the definitive treatment of Cushing’s syndrome (CS) but medications may also be used as a first-line therapy. Whether preoperative medical treatment (PMT) affects postoperative outcome remains controversial.

Objective

(1) Evaluate how frequently PMT is given to CS patients across Europe; (2) examine differences in preoperative characteristics of patients who receive PMT and those who undergo primary surgery and (3) determine if PMT influences postoperative outcome in pituitary-dependent CS (PIT-CS).

Patients and methods

1143 CS patients entered into the ERCUSYN database from 57 centers in 26 countries. Sixty-nine percent had PIT-CS, 25% adrenal-dependent CS (ADR-CS), 5% CS from an ectopic source (ECT-CS) and 1% were classified as having CS from other causes (OTH-CS).

Results

Twenty per cent of patients took PMT. ECT-CS and PIT-CS were more likely to receive PMT compared to ADR-CS (P < 0.001). Most commonly used drugs were ketoconazole (62%), metyrapone (16%) and a combination of both (12%). Median (interquartile range) duration of PMT was 109 (98) days. PIT-CS patients treated with PMT had more severe clinical features at diagnosis and poorer quality of life compared to those undergoing primary surgery (SX) (P < 0.05). Within 7 days of surgery, PIT-CS patients treated with PMT were more likely to have normal cortisol (P < 0.01) and a lower remission rate (P < 0.01). Within 6 months of surgery, no differences in morbidity or remission rates were observed between SX and PMT groups.

Conclusions

PMT may confound the interpretation of immediate postoperative outcome. Follow-up is recommended to definitely evaluate surgical results.