Thyroid cancers have long been considered to arise in middle age and, after their repeated proliferation, resulting in further damage to the genome, they progress to more aggressive and lethal cancers. However, in 2014, some studies were reported that might lead to a marked change in our understanding of the natural history of thyroid cancer. A high prevalence of papillary carcinoma in the young suggested that the first initiation of thyroid cancer is likely to occur in the infantile period. Such a conclusion was also supported by a very slow growth rate of papillary microcarcinomas (PMCs) in an observation trial. The proliferation rate of PMCs was negatively correlated with the age, and surgery to remove PMCs did not contribute to reduce mortality from thyroid cancer. These findings strongly suggested the existence of self-limiting cancers, which are truly malignant but do not progress to lethal cancers, for the first time in human history. The early detection of self-limiting cancers results in overdiagnosis. Ultrasonographic screening of the thyroid in the young should be avoided. Lethal thyroid cancers, whose origin is still unknown, appear suddenly after middle age. In the elderly, thyroid cancers are a mixture of self-limiting and lethal cancers; thus, when thyroid cancer is detected, careful follow-up with examination of its growth rate is required.
The main aim of this study is to explore whether these mast cell specific immunological biomarkers [immunoglobulin E (IgE), chymase and tryptase] is an independent risk factor of MetS and whether the combined action of these biomarkers increased the associations with MetS. Three mast cell-specific immunological biomarkers were measured using enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). One-way analysis of covariance and logistic regression models were used for analyzing the associations between immunological biomarkers with MetS. A total of 340 participants, 82 (24.1%) individuals had diabetes mellitus, 31 (9.1%) had MetS (without diabetes mellitus) and 110 had MetS plus diabetes mellitus. After adjusting by multivariable (age, gender, smoking, and family history for hypertension), compared with no diabetes mellitus or MetS group (reference group), hs-CRP was associated with diabetes mellitus [OR (odds ratio): 2.29 (1.15-4.57, 95% CI (confidence interval), p=0.019] and MetS plus diabetes mellitus [OR: 2.20 (1.05-4.61, 95% CI), p=0.036], IgE was associated with MetS plus diabetes mellitus [OR: 2.38 (1.13-5.02, 95% CI), p=0.023]. After adjusting by multivariable, compared with reference group, most of combined elevated inflammatory or immunological biomarkers were significantly associated with diabetes mellitus or MetS with or without diabetes mellitus. Patients with established diabetes mellitus or MetS had different inflammatory or immunological cytokine profile (such as hs-CRP, IgE, chymase, tryptase), which indicated that there is an alteration in the function of the immune system in diabetes mellitus or MetS patient. But these results are requested to be further demonstrated for large sample population-based cohort study.
In skeletal muscle, sortilin plays a predominant role in the sorting of glucose transporter 4 (Glut4), thereby controlling glucose uptake. Moreover, our previous study suggested that the sortilin expression levels are also implicated in myogenesis. Despite the importance of sortilin in skeletal muscle, however, the regulation of sortilin expression has not been completely understood. In the present study, we analyzed if the sortilin expression is regulated by glucose in C2C12 myocytes and rat skeletal muscles in vivo. Sortilin protein expression was elevated upon C2C12 cell differentiation and was further enhanced in the presence of a high concentration of glucose. The gene expression and protein degradation of sortilin were not affected by glucose. On the other hand, rapamycin partially reduced sortilin induction by a high concentration of glucose, which suggested that sortilin translation could be regulated by glucose, at least in part. We also examined if the sortilin regulation by glucose was also observed in skeletal muscles that were obtained from fed or fasted rats. Sortilin expression in both gastrocnemius and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) muscle was significantly decreased by 17-18h of starvation. On the other hand, pathological levels of high blood glucose did not alter the sortilin expression in rat skeletal muscle. Overall, the present study suggests that sortilin protein levels are reduced under hypoglycemic conditions by post-transcriptional control in skeletal muscles.
Liraglutide, an analogue of human glucagon-like peptide 1, reduces cardiovascular events in patients with type 2 diabetes; however, it has still been unknown by which mechanisms liraglutide could reduce cardiovascular events. Type 2 diabetic patients with insulin treatment were enrolled in this randomized, open-label, comparative study. Participants were randomly assigned to liraglutide plus insulin (liraglutide group) and insulin treatment (control group) at 1:1 allocation. Primary endpoint was the change in viscera fat are (VFA, cm2) at 24 weeks. Liver attenuation index (LAI) measured by abdominal computed tomography, urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio (ACR, mg/g), and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, skeletal muscle index (SMI), and quality of life (QOL) related to diabetes treatment were also determined. Seventeen patients (8; liraglutide group, 9; control group, mean age 59 ± 13 years; 53% female) completed this study. Liraglutide treatment significantly reduced VFA at 24 weeks; whereas, SFA was unchanged. ACR, LAI, and CRP levels were significantly reduced by liraglutide at 24 weeks and there was no difference in SMI between the two groups. Changes in VFA from baseline to 24 weeks were significantly associated with those in LAI, albuminuria, and HbA1c. Liraglutide treatment significantly improved QOL scores associated with anxiety and dissatisfaction with treatment and satisfaction with treatment. No severe adverse events were observed in both groups. Our data suggest that liraglutide could reduce visceral adiposity in parallel with attenuation of hepatic fat accumulation, albuminuria and micro-inflammation and improve QOL related to diabetes care in insulin-treated patients with type 2 diabetes.
X-linked hypophosphatemia (XLH) is a group of rare disorders caused by defective proximal tubular reabsorption of phosphate. Mutations in the PHEX gene are responsible for the majority of cases. There are very few reports of long-term complications of XLH other than skeletal and dental diseases. The aim of this study was to identify the phenotypic presentation of XLH during adulthood including complications other than skeletal and dental diseases. The clinical and biochemical phenotype of 22 adult patients with a PHEX gene mutation were examined retrospectively from their medical records. 6 patients had hypertension. The average age of hypertension onset was 29.0 years. Secondary hyperparathyroidism preceded the development of hypertension in 5 patients. 1 patient developed tertiary hyperparathyroidism. 15 patients had nephrocalcinosis. 2 patients had chronic renal dysfunction. Patients with hypertension had a significantly lower eGFR (p=0.010) compared to patients without hypertension. No significant difference was found in any other parameters. To examine the genotype-phenotype correlation, 10 adult males were chosen for analysis. No significant genotype-phenotype correlation analysis was revealed in any of the complications. However, there was a possibility that the age at nephrocalcinosis onset was younger in the non-missense mutation group than in the missense mutation group (p=0.063). This study corroborated the view that early-onset hypertension could be one of the characteristic complications seen in XLH patients. Considering the limited number of our patients, further study is necessary to address a potential cause of hypertension. XLH patients require careful lifelong treatment.
Direct reprogramming of autologous cells from diabetes patients to insulin producing cells is a new method for pancreatic cell replacement therapy. At present, transdifferentiation among mature cells is achieved mainly by introducing foreign genes into the starting tissue with viral vector, but there are potentical safety problems. In the present study, we delivered plasmids carrying Pdx1, Neurog3 and MafA genes (PNM) into mouse hepatocytes by hydrodynamics tail vein injection, investigated islet β cells markers in transfected cells from protein and mRNA level, and then observed the long-term control of blood glucose in diabetic mice. We found that hepatocytes could be directly reprogrammed into insulin-producing cells after PNM gene transfection by non-viral hydrodynamics injection, and fasting blood glucose was reduced to normal, and lasted until 100 days after transfection. Intraperitoneal glucose tolerance test (IPGTT) showed that glucose regulation ability was improved gradually and the serum insulin level approached to the level of normal mice with time. Insulin-positive cells were found in the liver tissue, and the expression of various islet β-cell-specific genes were detected at the mRNA level, including islet mature marker gene Ucn3. In conclusion, we provide a new approach for the treatment of diabetes by in vivo direct reprogramming of liver cells to insulin producing cells through non-viral methods.
Circulating neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is associated with obesity-related metabolic disorders. This study investigated the relationship between serum NGAL and early alteration of metabolic parameters in non-diabetic Korean women, particularly with respect to saturated fat (SFA) intake. Anthropometric parameters, fasting glycemic status, and levels of lipids, oxidative stress/inflammatory markers, and NGAL were measured in 82 non-diabetic Korean women [Super-healthy group (n=57) with 0 metabolic syndrome risk factor (MetS RF) and MetS-risk group (n=25) with MetS RF≥1]. Age, weight, waist circumference, blood pressure, fasting glucose, HbA1C, triglyceride, LDL and total-cholesterol, and NGAL levels were higher, and HDL-cholesterol was lower in the MetS-risk group than in the Super-healthy group. Age-adjusted serum NGAL levels were higher in the MetS-risk group than in the Super-healthy group. NGAL increased proportionally with increase in MetS RFs (p=0.038) and correlated positively with BMI, triglycerides, LDL- and total-cholesterol, interleukin-6, white blood cell count, and neutrophil%, and negatively with HDL-cholesterol and superoxide dismutase activity. Serum NGAL levels positively correlated with SFA intake before and after adjustment (age and BMI). Serum NGAL levels were higher in high-SFA consumers [≥7g/day, ≥7% of total calorie intake (TCI)] than in low-SFA consumers (<7g/day, <7% of TCI). Serum NGAL levels were highest in the MetS-risk group consuming higher SFA and lowest in the Super-healthy group consuming lower SFA. However, serum NGAL did not significantly differ between the low-SFA consuming MetS-risk and Super-healthy groups. The relationship between circulating NGAL and early alteration of metabolic parameters is associated with dietary SFA intake in non-diabetic Korean women.
Ad4-binding protein/steroidogenic factor 1 (Ad4BP/SF-1), a member of the nuclear receptor superfamily, is expressed in steroidogenic cells and regulates all steroidogenic gene expression. We recently employed mRNA and chromatin immunoprecipitation sequence (ChIP-seq) to demonstrate that Ad4BP/SF-1 directly regulates the expression of nearly all glycolytic genes. The pentose phosphate pathway (PPP) contributes to the production of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH). Although the expression of PPP genes and intracellular NADPH were decreased by Ad4BP/SF-1 knockdown, these genes were not the direct targets of Ad4BP/SF-1. This study therefore investigates whether Ad4BP/SF-1 directly regulates genes implicated in NADPH production. Examination of previously published data sets of mRNA sequence (mRNA-seq) and ChIP-seq strongly suggested a possibility that other NADPH-producing genes, such as malic enzyme 1 (Me1) and methylenetetrahydrofolate dehydrogenase 2 (Mthfd2), are the direct targets of Ad4BP/SF-1. Reporter gene assays and determination of intracellular NADPH concentration supported the notion that Ad4BP/SF-1 regulates NADPH production by regulating these genes. NADPH is required for macromolecule synthesis of compounds such as steroids, and for detoxification of reactive oxygen species. When synthesizing steroid hormones, steroidogenic cells consume NADPH through enzymatic reactions mediated by steroidogenic P450s. NADPH is also consumed through elimination of reactive oxygen species produced as the byproducts of the P450 reactions. Overall, Ad4BP/SF-1 potentially maintains the intracellular NADPH level through cooperative regulation of genes involved in the biological processes for consumption and supply.
Pancreatic islets express high levels of the orphan G-protein coupled receptor C5C (GPRC5C), the function of which remains to be established. Here we have examined the role of GPRC5C in the regulation of insulin secretion and β-cell survival and proliferation using human and mouse pancreatic islets. The expression of GPRC5C was analysed by RNA-sequencing, qPCR, western blotting and confocal microscopy. Insulin secretion and cell viability were determined by RIA and MTS assays, respectively. GPRC5C mRNA expression and protein level were reduced in the islets from type-2 diabetic donors. RNA sequencing in human islets revealed GPRC5C expression correlated with the expression of genes controlling apoptosis, cell survival and proliferation. A reduction in Gprc5c mRNA and protein expression was observed in islets isolated from old mice (>46 weeks of age) compared to that in islets from newborn (<3 weeks) mice. Down-regulation of Gprc5c led to both moderately reduced glucose-stimulated insulin release and also reduced cAMP content in mouse islets. Potentiation of glucose-stimulated insulin secretion concomitant with enhanced islet cAMP level by all-trans retinoic acid (ATRA) was attenuated upon Gprc5c-KD. ATRA also increased [Ca+2]i in Huh7-cells. Gprc5c over expression in Huh7 cells was associated with increased ERK1/2 activity. Gprc5c-KD in clonal MIN6c4 cells reduced cell proliferation and in murine islets increased apoptosis and the sensitivity of primary islet cells to a cocktail of pro-apoptotic cytokines. Our results demonstrate that agents activating GPRC5C represent a novel modality for the treatment and/or prevention of diabetes by restoring and/or maintaining functional β-cell mass.
Conflicting data have been published on the effects of aldosterone excess on glucose metabolism. Specifically, there are limited data on whether adrenalectomy in patients with aldosterone-producing adenomas (APA) can improve glucose metabolism. In this study we evaluated changes in glucose metabolism, before and after surgery for APA. The subjects were 61 patients treated with unilateral adrenalectomy, localized by adrenal venous sampling. A 75g-oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) was performed before and 1 year after adrenalectomy. Patients with diabetes mellitus or a serum cortisol level >3 μg/dL after a 1 mg dexamethasone suppression test, were excluded. Using the 75g-OGTT data, insulin secretion and insulin resistance (or sensitivity) indices were calculated. The results showed that immunoreactive insulin levels during the OGTT increased significantly after adrenalectomy, whereas plasma glucose levels, before and after surgery, were comparable. The insulinogenic index significantly increased after surgery (0.5 [0.4-0.8] to 0.8 [0.4-1.1], p < 0.001). The disposition index remained largely unchanged (806.2 [489.4-1,138.9] to 686.6 [479.4-922.1], p = 0.25). The homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance increased significantly (1.0 [0.6-1.5] to 1.5 [1.0-2.2], p < 0.001) and the ISImatsuda decreased significantly (6.9 [4.5-10.4] to 5.2 [3.4-7.9], p < 0.001). Changes in these indices were not correlated with changes in potassium and aldosterone levels before and after surgery. In conclusion, insulin secretion increased after adrenalectomy for APA, indicating that aldosterone excess inhibits insulin secretion. However, because of a parallel increase in insulin resistance, plasma glucose levels remained unchanged.
We evaluated the influence of catheter sampling position and size on left adrenal venous sampling (AVS) in patients with primary aldosteronism (PA) and analyzed their relationship to cortisol secretion. This retrospective study included 111 patients with a diagnosis of primary aldosteronism who underwent tetracosactide-stimulated AVS. Left AVS was obtained from two catheter positions — the central adrenal vein (CAV) and the common trunk. For common trunk sampling, 5-French catheters were used in 51 patients, and microcatheters were used in 60 patients. Autonomous cortisol secretion was evaluated with a low-dose dexamethasone suppression test in 87 patients. The adrenal/inferior vena cava cortisol concentration ratio [selectivity index (SI)] was significantly lower in samples from the left common trunk than those of the left CAV and right adrenal veins, but this difference was reduced when a microcatheter was used for common trunk sampling. Sample dilution in the common trunk of the left adrenal vein can be decreased by limiting sampling speed with the use of a microcatheter. Meanwhile, there was no significant difference in SI between the left CAV and right adrenal veins. Laterality, determined according to aldosterone/cortisol ratio (A/C ratio) based criteria, showed good reproducibility regardless of sampling position, unlike the absolute aldosterone value based criteria. However, in 11 cases with autonomous cortisol co-secretion, the cortisol hypersecreting side tended to be underestimated when using A/C ratio based criteria. Left CAV sampling enables symmetrical sampling, and may be essential when using absolute aldosterone value based criteria in cases where symmetrical cortisol secretion is uncertain.
Obesity is a major risk factor for chronic diseases and arises from the interactions between environmental factors and multiple genes. Psychosocial stress may affect the risk for obesity, modifying food intake and choice. A recent study suggested regulator of G-protein signaling 6 (RGS6) as a novel candidate gene for obesity in terms of reward-related feeding under stress. In this study, we tried to verify the unidentified connection between RGS6 and human obesity with psychosocial stress in a Korean population. A total of 1,462 adult subjects, who participated in the Korean Association Resource cohort project, were included for this analysis. Obesity-related traits including waist circumference, body mass index, and visceral adipose tissue were recorded. A total of 4 intronic SNPs for the RGS6 gene were used for this study. We found that interactions between SNP rs2239219 and psychosocial stress are significantly associated with abdominal obesity (p = 0.007). As risk allele of this SNP increased, prevalence of abdominal obesity under high-stress conditions gradually increased (p = 0.013). However, we found no SNPs-by-stress interaction effect on other adiposity phenotypes. This study suggests that RGS6 is closely linked to stress-induced abdominal obesity in Korean adults.
In this study, we investigated the ameliorating effects of ipragliflozin on fatty liver in patients with type 2 diabetes. The factors that influenced the amelioration of fatty liver were also examined. Analysis included data of 21 Japanese patients with type 2 diabetes obtained from our prospective observational study. After obtaining patients’ informed consent, once-daily ipragliflozin (50 mg/day) was given for 16 weeks. In addition to several clinical parameters, body composition was also compared before and after 16 weeks of treatment. The extent of fatty liver was estimated using a fatty liver index (FLI). After 16 weeks, FLI significantly decreased, from 70.1 ± 19.4 to 60.3 ± 25.5 (p = 0.0009) as well as levels of fasting plasma glucose (FPG), HbA1c, body weight, visceral adipose tissue (VAT), subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and fat mass. To reveal the factors influencing the FLI changes observed on ipragliflozin treatment, correlations between changes in FLI and several other measured parameters were examined. Changes in FPG (correlation coefficient = 0.4683, p = 0.0323) and HbA1c (correlation coefficient = 0.4383, p = 0.0469) showed significant positive correlations with changes in FLI. On the other hand, no correlations of changes in FLI were observed with body weight, VAT, SAT nor fat mass. In conclusion, ipragliflozin ameliorated FLI in Japanese patients with type 2 diabetes. Improvement in FLI was associated with that of glucose intolerance.
Fulminant type 1 diabetes is characterized by remarkably rapid and complete β-cell destruction. The established diagnostic criteria include the occurrence of diabetic ketosis soon after the onset of hyperglycemic symptoms, elevated plasma glucose with relatively low HbA1c at the first visit, and extremely low C-peptide. Serum C-peptide levels remain extremely low over a prolonged period. A 26-year-old-man with diabetic ketosis was admitted to our hospital. His relatively low HbA1c (7.6%), despite marked hyperglycemia (593 mg/dL) with marked ketosis, indicated abrupt onset. Islet-related autoantibodies were all negative. His data at onset, including extremely low serum C-peptide (0.11 ng/mL), fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for fulminant type 1 diabetes. However, his fasting serum C-peptide levels subsequently showed substantial recovery. While fasting C-peptide stayed below 0.30 ng/mL during the first two months post onset, the levels gradually increased and thereafter fluctuated between 0.60 ng/mL and 0.90 ng/mL until 24 months post onset. By means of multiple daily insulin injection therapy, his glycemic control has been well maintained (HbA1c approximately 6.0%), with relatively small glycemic fluctuations evaluated by continuous glucose monitoring. This clinical course suggests that, despite the abrupt diabetes onset with extremely low C-peptide levels, substantial numbers of β-cells had been spared destruction and their function later showed gradual recovery. Diabetes has come to be considered a much more heterogeneous disease than the present subdivisions suggest. This case does not fit into the existing concepts of either fulminant type 1 or ketosis-prone diabetes, thereby further highlighting the heterogeneity of idiopathic type 1 diabetes.
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