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T Arrigo, F De Luca, F Antoniazzi, F Galluzzi, M Segni, M Rosano, MF Messina and F Lombardo

OBJECTIVE: To investigate longitudinally body mass index (BMI) evolution and obesity prevalence in a large and very homogeneous study population consisting only of girls with non-organic central precocious puberty (CPP) who were treated with gonadotropin-releasing hormone agonists (GnRHa) for at least two years. PATIENTS AND DESIGN: The 101 girls with idiopathic CPP who were selected for this study fulfilled the following inclusion criteria: (a) suppression of gonadotropin and gonadal sex steroid secretion during the overall GnRHa treatment period; (b) adequate compliance with the therapy regimen. All the girls were treated for 44+/-14 months and were followed-up for 15.7+/-7.8 months after therapy withdrawal. RESULTS: At the start of therapy, 23.8% of the girls had a BMI exceeding 2 standard deviation scores (SDS) and were therefore classified as obese; both average BMI-SDS and obesity prevalence significantly decreased during the treatment period (chi(2)=16.6, P<0.0005) and only 4% of the patients, all with pre-existing obesity, were still obese at the end of therapy; during the therapy period, BMI-SDS increased in none of the patients. Both average BMI-SDS and obesity prevalence (from 4 to 0%; chi(2)=4.0, P<0.05) further decreased during the period that followed therapy withdrawal. CONCLUSIONS: (a) girls with idiopathic CPP are frequently obese at the onset of GnRHa therapy (23.8%), probably due to the hormonal changes which accompany the start of puberty; (b) their obesity is neither long-lasting nor related to GnRHa administration; (c) on the contrary, GnRHa therapy may have a favourable effect on BMI decrease, provided that treatment is performed for at least two years and is accompanied by a complete suppression of gonadotropin secretion; (d) this unexpected effect, which has never been reported hitherto, might represent a further indication for GnRHa administration in idiopathic CPP.

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F Lombardo, F De Luca, M Rosano, C Sferlazzas, C Lucanto, T Arrigo, MF Messina, G Crisafulli, M Wasniewska, M Valenzise and D Cucinotta

OBJECTIVE: The loss of pancreatic beta-cells is thought to be one of the principal causes of diabetes mellitus (DM) in cystic fibrosis (CF), but the role of peripheral insulin resistance (IR) in the pathogenesis of DM in CF remains unclear. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether eventual changes of glucose tolerance (GT) over time were associated with modifications of insulin secretion or sensitivity. METHODS: Plasma glucose and insulin responses to an oral GT test (OGTT) were investigated and reinvestigated 13 Years later in 14 CF patients with initial and persistent fasting euglycemia and no history of insulin treatment. Insulin sensitivity (IS) at both tests was assessed on the basis of insulin and glucose levels both in the fasting state and during OGTTs. RESULTS: From the 1st to the 2nd OGTT: (a) the prevalence of DM responses significantly increased; (b) the areas beneath the respective glucose and insulin curves significantly increased and decreased respectively; (c) IR and IS indices decreased and increased respectively, even in the patients who developed DM; (d) pulmonary function significantly worsened in the entire series, especially in the patients who developed DM. CONCLUSIONS: (i) the natural history of glyco-metabolic status in CF is characterized by deteriorating GT over time; (ii) insulinopenia plays a prominent role in the pathogenesis of GT worsening; (iii) IR does not play any significant part in the pathogenesis of DM development; (iv) deterioration of lung function tests is more severe in the subjects who develop DM over time.