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AIMS - Ghrelin is a gastric-derived hormone that stimulates growth hormone (GH) secretion and has a multi-faceted role in the regulation of energy homeostasis, including glucose metabolism. Circulating ghrelin concentrations are modulated in response to nutritional status, but responses to ghrelin in altered metabolic states are poorly understood. We investigated the metabolic effects of ghrelin in obesity and early after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB).
MATERIALS AND METHODS - We assessed central and peripheral metabolic responses to acyl ghrelin infusion (1 pmol kg min ) in healthy, lean subjects (n = 9) and non-diabetic, obese subjects (n = 9) before and 2 weeks after RYGB. Central responses were assessed by GH and pancreatic polypeptide (surrogate for vagal activity) secretion. Peripheral responses were assessed by hepatic and skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity during a hyperinsulinaemic-euglycaemic clamp.
RESULTS - Ghrelin-stimulated GH secretion was attenuated in obese subjects, but was restored by RYGB to a response similar to that of lean subjects. The heightened pancreatic polypeptide response to ghrelin infusion in the obese was attenuated after RYGB. Hepatic glucose production and hepatic insulin sensitivity were not altered by ghrelin infusion in RYGB subjects. Skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity was impaired to a similar degree in lean, obese and post-RYGB individuals in response to ghrelin infusion.
CONCLUSIONS - These data suggest that obesity is characterized by abnormal central, but not peripheral, responsiveness to ghrelin that can be restored early after RYGB before significant weight loss. Further work is necessary to fully elucidate the role of ghrelin in the metabolic changes that occur in obesity and following RYGB.
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
There is growing concern over confounding artifacts associated with β-cell-specific Cre-recombinase transgenic models, raising questions about their general usefulness in research. The inducible β-cell-specific transgenic (MIP-CreERT(1Lphi)) mouse was designed to circumvent many of these issues, and we investigated whether this tool effectively addressed concerns of ectopic expression and disruption of glucose metabolism. Recombinase activity was absent from the central nervous system using a reporter line and high-resolution microscopy. Despite increased pancreatic insulin content, MIP-CreERT mice on a chow diet exhibited normal ambient glycemia, glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, and appropriate insulin secretion in response to glucose in vivo and in vitro. However, MIP-CreERT mice on different genetic backgrounds were protected from high-fat/ streptozotocin (STZ)-induced hyperglycemia that was accompanied by increased insulin content and islet density. Ectopic human growth hormone (hGH) was highly expressed in MIP-CreERT islets independent of tamoxifen administration. Circulating insulin levels remained similar to wild-type controls, whereas STZ-associated increases in α-cell number and serum glucagon were significantly blunted in MIP-CreERT(1Lphi) mice, possibly due to paracrine effects of hGH-induced serotonin expression. These studies reveal important new insight into the strengths and limitations of the MIP-CreERT mouse line for β-cell research.
© 2015 by the American Diabetes Association. Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered.
The aim of this study was to determine whether antecedent stimulation of γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) A receptors with the benzodiazepine alprazolam can blunt physiologic responses during next-day moderate (90 min) exercise in healthy man. Thirty-one healthy individuals (16 male/15 female aged 28 ± 1 year, BMI 23 ± 3 kg/m(2)) were studied during separate, 2-day protocols. Day 1 consisted of morning and afternoon 2-h hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic or hypoglycemic clamps with or without 1 mg alprazolam given 30 min before a clamp. Day 2 consisted of 90-min euglycemic cycling exercise at 50% VO2max. Despite similar euglycemia (5.3 ± 0.1 mmol/L) and insulinemia (46 ± 6 pmol/L) during day 2 exercise studies, GABA A activation with alprazolam during day 1 euglycemia resulted in significant blunting of plasma epinephrine, norepinephrine, glucagon, cortisol, and growth hormone responses. Lipolysis (glycerol, nonesterified fatty acids) and endogenous glucose production during exercise were also reduced, and glucose infusion rates were increased following prior euglycemia with alprazolam. Prior hypoglycemia with alprazolam resulted in further reduction of glucagon and cortisol responses during exercise. We conclude that prior activation of GABA A pathways can play a significant role in blunting key autonomous nervous system, neuroendocrine, and metabolic physiologic responses during next-day exercise in healthy man.
© 2015 by the American Diabetes Association. Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered.
The human growth hormone (hGH) minigene is frequently used in the derivation of transgenic mouse lines to enhance transgene expression. Although this minigene is present in the transgenes as a secondcistron, and thus not thought to be expressed, we found that three commonly used lines, Pdx1-Cre(Late), RIP-Cre, and MIP-GFP, each expressed significant amounts of hGH in pancreatic islets. Locally secreted hGH binds to prolactin receptors on β cells, activates STAT5 signaling, and induces pregnancy-like changes in gene expression, thereby augmenting pancreatic β cell mass and insulin content. In addition, islets of Pdx1-Cre(Late) mice have lower GLUT2 expression and reduced glucose-induced insulin release and are protected against the β cell toxin streptozotocin. These findings may be important when interpreting results obtained when these and other hGH minigene-containing transgenic mice are used.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Multiple Rabs are associated with secretory granules/vesicles, but how these GTPases are coordinated to promote regulated exocytosis is not well understood. In bladder umbrella cells a subapical pool of discoidal/fusiform-shaped vesicles (DFVs) undergoes Rab11a-dependent regulated exocytosis in response to bladder filling. We show that Rab11a-associated vesicles are enmeshed in an apical cytokeratin meshwork and that Rab11a likely acts upstream of Rab8a to promote exocytosis. Surprisingly, expression of Rabin8, a previously described Rab11a effector and guanine nucleotide exchange factor for Rab8, stimulates stretch-induced exocytosis in a manner that is independent of its catalytic activity. Additional studies demonstrate that the unconventional motor protein myosin5B motor (Myo5B) works in association with the Rab8a-Rab11a module to promote exocytosis, possibly by ensuring transit of DFVs through a subapical, cortical actin cytoskeleton before fusion. Our results indicate that Rab11a, Rab8a, and Myo5B function as part of a network to promote stretch-induced exocytosis, and we predict that similarly organized Rab networks will be common to other regulated secretory pathways.
BACKGROUND - Adult maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) patients experience high mortality and morbidity and poor quality of life (QoL). Markers of protein-energy wasting are associated with these poor outcomes. The OPPORTUNITY™ Trial examined whether recombinant human growth hormone (hGH) reduces mortality in hypoalbuminemic MHD patients. Secondary end points were effects on number of hospitalizations, cardiovascular events, lean body mass (LBM), serum proteins, exercise capacity, QoL and adverse events.
METHODS - We performed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter multinational trial stratified for diabetic status. Clinically, stable adult MHD patients with serum albumin <4.0 g/dL were randomized to subcutaneous injections of hGH, 20 μg/kg/day, or placebo. Planned treatment duration was 24 months for 2500 patients. The trial was terminated early due to slow recruitment.
RESULTS - Seven hundred and twelve patients were randomized until trial termination; 695 patients received at least one dose of trial medication. Mean treatment duration was 20 weeks (no completers). There were no differences between groups in all-cause mortality, cardiovascular morbidity or mortality, serum albumin, LBM, physical exercise capacity or QoL. The hGH group, compared to placebo, displayed a reduction in body weight, total body fat, serum high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and possibly homocysteine and an increase in serum high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol and transferrin levels.
CONCLUSIONS - Although the OPPORTUNITY™ Trial was terminated early, treatment with hGH, compared to placebo, improved certain cardiovascular risk factors but did not reduce mortality, cardiovascular events or improve nutritional factors or QoL. The power for showing differences was substantially reduced due to the marked decrease in treatment duration and sample size.
CONTEXT - Dominant-negative GH1 mutations cause familial isolated growth hormone deficiency type II (IGHD II), which is characterized by GH deficiency, occasional multiple anterior pituitary hormone deficiencies, and anterior pituitary hypoplasia. The basis of the variable expression and progression of IGHD II among relatives who share the same GH1 mutation is poorly understood.
OBJECTIVE - We hypothesized that the cellular ratios of mutant/normal GH1 transcripts would correlate with the severity of the IGHD II phenotype. We determined the relative amounts of mutant and normal GH1 transcripts in cell lines and correlated transcript ratios with severity.
DESIGN AND PATIENTS - Members of the same IGHD II kindred were genotyped for the GH1 E3+1 G/A mutation by DNA sequencing. Ratios of their 17.5-kDa (mutant)/22-kDa (normal) GH1 transcripts were determined in cultured lymphocytes (CLs), and these ratios were correlated with height sd scores obtained before GH replacement therapy.
RESULTS - Ratios of 17.5-/22-kDa GH1 transcripts in CLs from family members with the same IGHD II mutation correlated with differences in their height SD scores.
CONCLUSIONS - Our findings suggest that expression levels of both the mutant and normal GH1 allele are important in the pathogenesis of IGHD II, that the ratio of mutant/normal transcripts may be a predictive marker of the penetrance and severity of IGHD II, and that CLs may be useful as surrogates to study GH1 transcript expression of subjects whose anterior pituitary cells are not available.
UNLABELLED - Growth hormone may be associated with the development of colorectal cancer directly and/or indirectly via increased serum level of insulin-like growth factor (IGF-I). Regular physical activity can decrease insulin resistance and modulates IGF-I production. A common polymorphism in the GH1 gene, rs2665802, was previously shown to be associated with lower IGF-I levels and decreased colorectal cancer (CRC) risk. We investigated the association of this polymorphism and physical activity with colorectal cancer risk in a case-control study.
METHODS - The analysis includes 3,041 (1,402 cases and 1,639 controls) participants in the Molecular Epidemiology of Colorectal Cancer study, a population-based case-control study in Northern Israel. Analysis was carried out separately in two sets. The first set included 1,248 subjects (625 cases, 623 controls), and the second validation set consisted of 1,793 subjects (777 cases, 1,016 controls).
RESULTS - No association was found between the studied polymorphism and CRC risk. However, evaluation of gene environment interactions revealed an interaction between leisure time physical activity and the GH1 polymorphism, which was consistent in both sets (P(interaction) = 0.005). The genotype AA was associated with decreased risk of CRC among individuals who did not engage in any such activity (odds ratio, 0.76; 95% confidence interval, 0.52-0.98), whereas the same genotype was marginally associated with increased risk among individuals who reported physical activity (odds ratio, 1.38; 95% confidence interval, 0.98-1.94).
CONCLUSIONS - We found that the A allele of the rs2665802 polymorphism is associated with reduced risk of CRC only among physically inactive individuals, indicating an interaction between physical activity and the growth hormone/IGF-I system. A replication of the observed findings and further investigation of the underlying mechanism is warranted.
BACKGROUND - Growth hormone secretion and muscle mass decline from midpuberty throughout life, culminating in sarcopenia, frailty, decreased function, and loss of independence. The decline of growth hormone in the development of sarcopenia is one of many factors, and its etiologic role needs to be demonstrated.
OBJECTIVE - To determine whether MK-677, an oral ghrelin mimetic, increases growth hormone secretion into the young-adult range without serious adverse effects, prevents the decline of fat-free mass, and decreases abdominal visceral fat in healthy older adults.
DESIGN - 2-year, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, modified-crossover clinical trial.
SETTING - General clinical research center study performed at a university hospital.
PARTICIPANTS - 65 healthy adults (men, women receiving hormone replacement therapy, and women not receiving hormone replacement therapy) ranging from 60 to 81 years of age.
INTERVENTION - Oral administration of MK-677, 25 mg, or placebo once daily.
MEASUREMENTS - Growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor I levels. Fat-free mass and abdominal visceral fat were the primary end points after 1 year of treatment. Other end points were body weight, fat mass, insulin sensitivity, lipid and cortisol levels, bone mineral density, limb lean and fat mass, isokinetic strength, function, and quality of life. All end points were assessed at baseline and every 6 months.
RESULTS - Daily administration of MK-677 significantly increased growth hormone and insulin-like growth factor I levels to those of healthy young adults without serious adverse effects. Mean fat-free mass decreased in the placebo group but increased in the MK-677 group (change, -0.5 kg [95% CI, -1.1 to 0.2 kg] vs. 1.1 kg [CI, 0.7 to 1.5 kg], respectively; P < 0.001), as did body cell mass, as reflected by intracellular water (change, -1.0 kg [CI, -2.1 to 0.2 kg] vs. 0.8 kg [CI, -0.1 to 1.6 kg], respectively; P = 0.021). No significant differences were observed in abdominal visceral fat or total fat mass; however, the average increase in limb fat was greater in the MK-677 group than the placebo group (1.1 kg vs. 0.24 kg; P = 0.001). Body weight increased 0.8 kg (CI, -0.3 to 1.8 kg) in the placebo group and 2.7 kg (CI, 2.0 to 3.5 kg) in the MK-677 group (P = 0.003). Fasting blood glucose level increased an average of 0.3 mmol/L (5 mg/dL) in the MK-677 group (P = 0.015), and insulin sensitivity decreased. The most frequent side effects were an increase in appetite that subsided in a few months and transient, mild lower-extremity edema and muscle pain. Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels decreased in the MK-677 group relative to baseline values (change, -0.14 mmol/L [CI, -0.27 to -0.01 mmol/L]; -5.4 mg/dL [CI, -10.4 to -0.4 mg/dL]; P = 0.026); no differences between groups were observed in total or high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels. Cortisol levels increased 47 nmol/L (CI, 28 to 71 nmol/L (1.7 microg/dL [CI, 1.0 to 2.6 microg/dL]) in MK-677 recipients (P = 0.020). Changes in bone mineral density consistent with increased bone remodeling occurred in MK-677 recipients. Increased fat-free mass did not result in changes in strength or function. Two-year exploratory analyses confirmed the 1-year results.
LIMITATION - Study power (duration and participant number) was insufficient to evaluate functional end points in healthy elderly persons.
CONCLUSION - Over 12 months, the ghrelin mimetic MK-677 enhanced pulsatile growth hormone secretion, significantly increased fat-free mass, and was generally well tolerated. Long-term functional and, ultimately, pharmacoeconomic, studies in elderly persons are indicated.
BACKGROUND - The mortality rate of maintenance hemodialysis (MHD) patients remains high. Measures of protein-energy wasting, including hypoalbuminemia, are strongly associated with their high mortality. Growth hormone (GH) may improve lean body mass (LBM) and serum albumin levels, and health-related quality of life (HRQoL), which are significantly and positively associated with survival in MHD patients. The OPPORTUNITY Trial will examine whether GH reduces mortality and morbidity and improves overall health in hypoalbuminemic MHD patients.
HYPOTHESIS - The primary hypothesis is that daily recombinant human GH injections, compared with placebo, improve survival in hypoalbuminemic MHD patients. Secondary hypotheses are that GH improves morbidity and health, including number of hospitalized days, time to cardiovascular events, LBM, serum protein and inflammatory marker levels, exercise capacity, and HRQoL, and has a favorable safety profile.
DESIGN/MEASUREMENTS - This is a prospective, double-blind, multicenter, randomized clinical trial involving 2500 MHD patients, up to 50% with diabetes mellitus, from 22 countries. Patients are randomized in a 1:1 ratio to receive daily injections of GH (20 microg/kg per day) or placebo for 104 weeks. Key inclusion criteria include clinically stable and well-dialyzed (Kt/V > or =1.2) adult MHD patients with serum albumin <4.0 g/dl. Exclusion criteria include active malignancy, active proliferative or severe nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy, uncontrolled hypertension, chronic use of high-dose glucocorticoids, or immunosuppressive agents and pregnancy.
CONCLUSIONS - The OPPORTUNITY Trial is the first large-scale randomized clinical trial in adult MHD patients evaluating the response to GH of such clinical endpoints as mortality, morbidity, markers of body protein mass, inflammation, exercise capacity, and HRQoL.