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Free access

Sima Nazarpour, Fahimeh Ramezani Tehrani, Masoumeh Simbar, Maryam Tohidi, Hamid Alavi Majd, and Fereidoun Azizi

Background

Despite some studies indicating that thyroid antibody positivity during pregnancy has been associated with adverse pregnancy outcomes, evidence regarding the effects of levothyroxine (LT4) treatment of euthyroid/subclinical hypothyroid pregnant women with autoimmune thyroid disease on pregnancy outcome is limited. We aimed to assess whether pregnant women with autoimmune thyroid disease, but without overt thyroid dysfunction are affected by higher rates of adverse pregnancy outcomes. In addition, we aimed to explore whether LT4 treatment improves the pregnancy outcome of affected women.

Methods

A prospective study was carried out on pregnant women from the first trimester to delivery. The study was conducted among pregnant women receiving prenatal care in centers under coverage of Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences. Of a total of 1746 pregnant women, screened for thyroid dysfunction, 1028 euthyroid TPOAb-negative (TPOAb) and 131 thyroid peroxidase antibody-positive (TPOAb+) women without overt thyroid dysfunction entered the second phase of the study. TPOAb+ women were randomly divided into two groups: group A (n = 65), treated with LT4 and group B (n = 66), received no treatment. The 1028 TPOAb women (group C) served as a normal population control group. Primary outcomes were preterm delivery and miscarriage and secondary outcomes included placenta abruption, still birth, neonatal admission and neonatal TSH levels.

Results

Groups A and C displayed a lower rate of preterm deliveries compared with group B (RR = 0.30, 95% CI: 0.1–0.85, P = 0.0229) and (RR = 0.23, 95% CI: 0.14–0.40, P < 0.001) respectively. There was no statistically significant difference in the rates of preterm labor between groups A and C (RR = 0.79, 95% CI: 0.30–2.09, P = 0.64). The number needed to treat (NNT) for preterm birth was 5.9 (95% CI: 3.33–25.16)

Conclusions

Treatment with LT4 decreases the risk of preterm delivery in women who are positive for TPOAb.

Free access

Cesar Luiz Boguszewski and John Ayuk

Based on experimental and animal models, epidemiological data from non-acromegaly populations, and longitudinal and cross-sectional cohorts of patients with acromegaly, a potential association between acromegaly and cancer has long been hypothesized, in particular colorectal cancer, and, to a lesser extent, breast, thyroid and prostate cancers. The exact mechanisms underlying this potential association have not been fully elucidated. Results from studies examining cancer incidence and mortality in acromegaly have been inconsistent, with some demonstrating increased risk, whereas others show no increase. This article reviews the existing data relating to cancer risk and mortality in acromegaly, exploring the limitations of study designs and the impact of changes in disease control and patient outcomes over time.

Open access

Daniele Cassatella, Sasha R Howard, James S Acierno, Cheng Xu, Georgios E Papadakis, Federico A Santoni, Andrew A Dwyer, Sara Santini, Gerasimos P Sykiotis, Caroline Chambion, Jenny Meylan, Laura Marino, Lucie Favre, Jiankang Li, Xuanzhu Liu, Jianguo Zhang, Pierre-Marc Bouloux, Christian De Geyter, Anne De Paepe, Waljit S Dhillo, Jean-Marc Ferrara, Michael Hauschild, Mariarosaria Lang-Muritano, Johannes R Lemke, Christa Flück, Attila Nemeth, Franziska Phan-Hug, Duarte Pignatelli, Vera Popovic, Sandra Pekic, Richard Quinton, Gabor Szinnai, Dagmar l’Allemand, Daniel Konrad, Saba Sharif, Özlem Turhan Iyidir, Brian J Stevenson, Huanming Yang, Leo Dunkel, and Nelly Pitteloud

Objective

Congenital hypogonadotropic hypogonadism (CHH) and constitutional delay of growth and puberty (CDGP) represent rare and common forms of GnRH deficiency, respectively. Both CDGP and CHH present with delayed puberty, and the distinction between these two entities during early adolescence is challenging. More than 30 genes have been implicated in CHH, while the genetic basis of CDGP is poorly understood.

Design

We characterized and compared the genetic architectures of CHH and CDGP, to test the hypothesis of a shared genetic basis between these disorders.

Methods

Exome sequencing data were used to identify rare variants in known genes in CHH (n = 116), CDGP (n = 72) and control cohorts (n = 36 874 ExAC and n = 405 CoLaus).

Results

Mutations in at least one CHH gene were found in 51% of CHH probands, which is significantly higher than in CDGP (7%, P = 7.6 × 10−11) or controls (18%, P = 5.5 × 10−12). Similarly, oligogenicity (defined as mutations in more than one gene) was common in CHH patients (15%) relative to CDGP (1.4%, P = 0.002) and controls (2%, P = 6.4 × 10−7).

Conclusions

Our data suggest that CDGP and CHH have distinct genetic profiles, and this finding may facilitate the differential diagnosis in patients presenting with delayed puberty.

Free access

Olympia Koulouri, Narayanan Kandasamy, Andrew C Hoole, Daniel Gillett, Sarah Heard, Andrew S Powlson, Dominic G O’Donovan, Anand K Annamalai, Helen L Simpson, Scott A Akker, Simon J B Aylwin, Antonia Brooke, Harit Buch, Miles J Levy, Niamh Martin, Damian Morris, Craig Parkinson, James R Tysome, Tom Santarius, Neil Donnelly, John Buscombe, Istvan Boros, Rob Smith, Franklin Aigbirhio, Nagui M Antoun, Neil G Burnet, Heok Cheow, Richard J Mannion, John D Pickard, and Mark Gurnell

Objective

To determine if functional imaging using 11C-methionine positron emission tomography co-registered with 3D gradient echo MRI (Met-PET/MRI), can identify sites of residual active tumour in treated acromegaly, and discriminate these from post-treatment change, to allow further targeted treatment.

Design/methods

Twenty-six patients with persistent acromegaly after previous treatment, in whom MRI appearances were considered indeterminate, were referred to our centre for further evaluation over a 4.5-year period. Met-PET/MRI was performed in each case, and findings were used to decide regarding adjunctive therapy. Four patients with clinical and biochemical remission after transsphenoidal surgery (TSS), but in whom residual tumour was suspected on post-operative MRI, were also studied.

Results

Met-PET/MRI demonstrated tracer uptake only within the normal gland in the four patients who had achieved complete remission after primary surgery. In contrast, in 26 patients with active acromegaly, Met-PET/MRI localised sites of abnormal tracer uptake in all but one case. Based on these findings, fourteen subjects underwent endoscopic TSS, leading to a marked improvement in (n = 7), or complete resolution of (n = 7), residual acromegaly. One patient received stereotactic radiosurgery and two patients with cavernous sinus invasion were treated with image-guided fractionated radiotherapy, with good disease control. Three subjects await further intervention. Five patients chose to receive adjunctive medical therapy. Only one patient developed additional pituitary deficits after Met-PET/MRI-guided TSS.

Conclusions

In patients with persistent acromegaly after primary therapy, Met-PET/MRI can help identify the site(s) of residual pituitary adenoma when MRI appearances are inconclusive and direct further targeted intervention (surgery or radiotherapy).

Open access

Uta Neumann, Daniela Burau, Sarah Spielmann, Martin J Whitaker, Richard J Ross, Charlotte Kloft, and Oliver Blankenstein

Objectives

Due to the lack of paediatric-licensed formulations, children are often treated with individualized pharmacy-compounded adult medication. An international web-based survey about the types of medication in children with adrenal insufficiency (AI) revealed that the majority of paediatric physicians are using pharmacy-compounded medication to treat children with AI. Observations of loss of therapy control in children with congenital adrenal hyperplasia with compounded hydrocortisone capsules and regained control after prescribing a new hydrocortisone batch led to this ‘real world’ evaluation of pharmacy-compounded paediatric hydrocortisone capsules.

Methods

Capsule samples were collected randomly from volunteering parents of treated children suffering from congenital adrenal hyperplasia from all over Germany. Analysis of net mass and hydrocortisone content by high-performance liquid chromatography with ultraviolet (HPLC-UV) detection method was performed based on the European Pharmacopeia.

Results

In a total of 61 batches that were sent, 5 batches could not be analysed because of missing dose information, insufficient number of capsules or were not possible to be evaluated. Fifty-six batches containing 1125 capsules were evaluated. 21.4% of the batches revealed insufficiency in uniformity of net mass or drug content and additional 3.6% failed because they did not contain the labelled drug.

Conclusions

Compounded medication is a possible cause of variation of steroid doses in children with adrenal insufficiency or congenital adrenal hyperplasia, putting these vulnerable patients at risk of poor disease control and adrenal crisis. These data may apply to other individualized compounded oral medication as well, emphasizing the need for development of licensed paediatric formulations approved by regulatory authorities.

Free access

Husam Ghanim, Sandeep Dhindsa, Sanaa Abuaysheh, Manav Batra, Nitesh D Kuhadiya, Antoine Makdissi, Ajay Chaudhuri, and Paresh Dandona

Aims

One-third of males with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) have hypogonadism, characterized by low total and free testosterone concentrations. We hypothesized that this condition is associated with a compensatory increase in the expression of androgen receptors (AR) and that testosterone replacement reverses these changes. We also measured estrogen receptor and aromatase expression.

Materials and methods

This is a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Thirty-two hypogonadal and 32 eugonadal men with T2DM were recruited. Hypogonadal men were randomized to receive intramuscular testosterone or saline every 2 weeks for 22 weeks. We measured AR, ERα and aromatase expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (MNC), adipose tissue and skeletal muscle in hypogonadal and eugonadal males with T2DM at baseline and after 22 weeks of treatment in those with hypogonadism.

Results

The mRNA expression of AR, ERα (ESR1) and aromatase in adipose tissue from hypogonadal men was significantly lower as compared to eugonadal men, and it increased significantly to levels comparable to those in eugonadal patients with T2DM following testosterone treatment. AR mRNA expression was also significantly lower in MNC from hypogonadal patients compared to eugonadal T2DM patients. Testosterone administration in hypogonadal patients also restored AR mRNA and nuclear extract protein levels from MNC to that in eugonadal patients. In the skeletal muscle, AR mRNA and protein expression are lower in men with hypogonadism. Testosterone treatment restored AR expression levels to that comparable to levels in eugonadal men.

Conclusions

We conclude that, contrary to our hypothesis, the expression of AR, ERα and aromatase is significantly diminished in hypogonadal men as compared to eugonadal men with type 2 diabetes. Following testosterone replacement, there is a reversal of these deficits.

Open access

Christian J Strasburger, Anders Mattsson, Patrick Wilton, Ferah Aydin, Judith Hey-Hadavi, and Beverly M K Biller

Pegvisomant monotherapy is effective and safe in treatment of acromegaly. However, some clinicians combine pegvisomant with somatostatin analogues (SSA) or dopamine agonist (DA). In this analysis of ACROSTUDY, a long-term non-interventional study, the use of combination regimens was evaluated. Based on their baseline treatment, 2043 patients were retrospectively categorized as: long-acting SSA combined with pegvisomant, ‘Combo SSA’ 768 patients (38%); DA combined with pegvisomant, ‘Combo DA’ 123 (6%); pegvisomant monotherapy, ‘Peg mono’ 1128 (55%). Treatment patterns changed over the 10-year period, with recent patients more likely to receive any combination (20% in 2003 vs 54% in 2012). Combo SSA use varied widely among countries from 22% to 78%. Exposure periods of the three treatment modalities were defined from pegvisomant start until the last visit in ACROSTUDY; patients could switch treatment categories. At year 4, IGF-I was normal in 62% of Combo SSA, 63% of Combo DA and 65% of Peg mono groups. Pegvisomant was initiated as daily injections in 94% of patients in the Peg mono group, 66% of Combo SSA and 91% of Combo DA patients. During 6169 years of treatment exposure, 3424 adverse events (AEs) were reported in 946 (51%) patients, of which 617 (18%) were serious and 401 (12%) were considered treatment related. The reported incidence of serious AEs and treatment-related non-serious AEs were similar among the three treatment modalities. This analysis describes real-world clinical care and shows favorable efficacy and safety for Peg mono and combinations. Novel findings include an increased use of combination therapy over time and variability in treatment modalities between countries.