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Alix Besançon, Jacques Beltrand, Isabelle Le Gac, Dominique Luton, and Michel Polak


Hyperthyroidism in neonates born to mothers with Graves' disease (GD) can be associated with significant morbidity and mortality, but is still overlooked by clinicians. Management of neonatal hyperthyroidism would be improved by a better understanding of the predictive factors involved. The aim of this study was to evaluate the course of thyroid function and clinical outcomes during the first postnatal month in babies born to mothers with GD.


Prospective observational study.


Sixty-eight neonates born to mothers with GD were managed from birth and divided into three groups based on thyrotropin receptor antibody (TRAb) and anti-thyroid drug (ATD) status in the mother: TRAb−ve/ATD−ve, n=27; TRAb−ve/ATD+ ve, n=8; and TRAb+ve/ATD+ve, n=33. The main outcome measures were clinical examination, thyroid function tests (TSH, free thyroxine (FT4), free triiodothyronine, and TRAb), echocardiography, thyroid ultrasonography, and bone maturation assessment.


None of the infants born to TRAb−ve mothers with GD developed neonatal hyperthyroidism. Of the 33 TRAb+ve/ATD+ve neonates, 24 (72.7%) had positive TRAb on cord blood assays, and seven of these developed neonatal hyperthyroidism. FT4 elevation between days 3 and 7 but not at birth was predictive of the development of hyperthyroidism.


TRAb status should be checked in the third trimester in mothers with GD and on cord blood in their neonates; if positive, it indicates a high risk of neonatal hyperthyroidism. FT4 measurement at birth should be repeated between days 3 and 5 (and by day 7 at the latest); rapid FT4 elevation during the first postnatal week is predictive of hyperthyroidism and warrants ATD therapy.

Free access

Jacques Beltrand, Najiba Lahlou, Tifenn Le Charpentier, Guy Sebag, Sofia Leka, Michel Polak, Nadia Tubiana-Rufi, Didier Lacombe, Marc de Kerdanet, Frederic Huet, Jean-Jacques Robert, Didier Chevenne, Pierre Gressens, and Claire Lévy-Marchal


Recently, in a 4-month proof-of-concept trial, beneficial metabolic effects were reported in non-diabetic children with Berardinelli–Seip congenital lipodystrophy (BSCL); this information prompted us to hypothesize that long-term leptin-replacement therapy might improve or reverse the early complications of the disease in these patients.

Patients and methods

A 28-month trial was implemented in eight patients. Efficacy assessment was based on a decrease in serum triglyceride concentrations, and/or a decrease in liver volume and/or an increase in insulin sensitivity of at least 30% respectively. The response was defined as follows: total (3/3 positive criteria), partial (1 or 2/3), or negative (0/3). Anti-leptin antibodies were measured with a radiobinding assay, and a neutralizing effect was assessed in primary cultures of embryonic neurons incubated with an apoptotic agent (N-methyl-d-aspartate) and the patient serum, with or without leptin.


A negative or partial response to treatment was observed in five of eight patients even when leptin dosages were increased. A displaceable leptin binding was detectable in all patients after 2 months of treatment. At 28 months, binding was higher in the patients with a negative response than in the total responders, and it paralleled both the increase in leptin dosage and serum leptin concentrations. Co-incubation of embryonic neurons with serum from two patients with a negative response inhibited the neuroprotective effect of leptin.


Under leptin therapy, patients with BSCL may develop a resistance to leptin, which could be partly of immunological origin, blunting the previously reported beneficial effects.

Free access

Dinane Samara-Boustani, Ana Colmenares, Caroline Elie, Myriam Dabbas, Jacques Beltrand, Virgile Caron, Claude Ricour, Paul Jacquin, Nadia Tubiana-Rufi, Claire Levy-Marchal, Christine Delcroix, Delphine Martin, Lila Benadjaoud, Evelyne Jacqz Aigrain, Christine Trivin, Kathleen Laborde, Elisabeth Thibaud, Jean-Jacques Robert, and Michel Polak


To compare the pubertal development, the hormonal profiles and the prevalence of hirsutism and menstrual disorders in obese adolescent girls and adolescent girls with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM).


Data were collected from 96 obese adolescent girls and 78 adolescent girls with T1DM at Tanner stage IV or V, whose ages ranged between 11.9 and 17.9 years.


High prevalence of hirsutism and menstrual disorder was found in the obese adolescent girls (36.5 and 42% respectively) and the adolescent girls with T1DM (21 and 44% respectively). The obese girls were significantly younger at pubarche, thelarche and menarche than the girls with T1DM. Hirsutism in the obese girls and those with T1DM was associated with hyperandrogenaemia and a raised free androgen index (FAI). When the cause of the raised FAI was investigated in both the groups of girls with hirsutism, the raised FAI in the obese girls was due to low serum sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) levels. In contrast, the raised FAI of the girls with T1DM and hirsutism was due to hyperandrogenaemia. Menstrual disorders in the T1DM girls were associated also with hyperandrogenaemia unlike obese girls.


Hirsutism and menstrual disorders are common in obese adolescent girls and adolescent girls with T1DM. Although hyperandrogenaemia is present in both groups of girls, the androgenic profiles of the two groups differ. The hyperandrogenaemia in the obese girls is primarily due to their decreased serum SHBG levels, whereas the hyperandrogenaemia in the girls with T1DM is due to their increased androgen production.