There is concern that vitamin D deficiency is prevalent among children in Japan as well as worldwide. We conducted a nationwide epidemiologic survey of symptomatic vitamin D deficiency to observe its incidence rate among Japanese children. A questionnaire inquiring the number of new patients with vitamin D deficiency rickets and/or hypocalcemia for 3 years was sent to 855 randomly selected hospitals with a pediatrics department in Japan. In this survey, we found that 250 children were diagnosed with symptomatic vitamin D deficiency. The estimated number of patients with symptomatic vitamin D deficiency per year was 183 (95% confidence interval (CI): 145–222). The overall annual incidence rate among children under 15 years of age was 1.1 per 100,000 population (95% CI: 0.9–1.4). The second survey has provided detailed information on 89 patients with symptomatic vitamin D deficiency under 5 years of age in hospitals in the current research group. The nationwide and second surveys estimated the overall annual incidence rate of symptomatic vitamin D deficiency in children under 5 years of age to be 3.5 (2.7–4.2) per 100,000 population. The second survey revealed 83% had bowed legs, 88% had exclusive breastfeeding, 49% had a restricted and/or unbalanced diet and 31% had insufficient sun exposure among the 89 patients. This is the first nationwide survey on definitive clinical vitamin D deficiency in children in Japan. Elucidating the frequency and characteristics of symptomatic vitamin D deficiency among children is useful to develop preventative public health strategies.
Type 2 diabetes is a serious threat to human health all over the world. It is particularly important to look for the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes. Researchers have found that obesity was associated with a broad chronic inflammatory response and type 2 diabetes. And tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) is one of the most important cytokines related with obesity. To explore the functional role of TNF-α in the regulation of glucose homeostasis, TNF-α receptor 1 and TNF-α receptor 2 double knockout (TNFR1/R2 DKO) mouse model were used in our study. After high fat diet (HFD) feeding, we detected that the insulin resistance was dramatically improved and circulated TNF-α was upregulated in TNFR1/R2 DKO mice. Surprisingly, glucose homeostasis was worsened, when we down regulate the levels of plasma TNF-α in TNFR1/R2 DKO mice by administering Adeno associated virus-shRNA-TNF-α (AAV-shTNF-α). Subsequently, in ob/ob mice, we confirmed that the glucose homeostasis could be improved when we up regulate the levels of plasma TNF-α by administering Adeno associated virus-TNF-α (AAV-TNF-α). Our findings suggested that TNFR1 and TNFR2 may not be the only receptors for TNF-α and TNF-α probably plays a positive role in reducing insulin resistance via a TNFRs-independent way in diabetic mice.
Previous studies suggested that reduced muscular strength was one of the potential predictor of prevalence of diabetes mellitus. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association between toe flexor strength (TFS) and handgrip strength (HGS) and the prevalence of diabetes mellitus. Cross-sectional analysis was conducted using data from 1,390 Japanese males (35–59 years). TFS and HGS were measured and medical examinations undertaken. The prevalence of diabetes mellitus was defined as fasting blood glucose ≥126 mg/dL, glycated hemoglobin ≥6.5% (48 mmol/mol), and/or current use of anti-diabetes mellitus drugs. A total of 114 participants had diabetes mellitus. TFS in participants with diabetes mellitus was significantly lower than that in persons not suffering from diabetes mellitus but HGS was not. Odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) per 1-standard deviation–increase in muscular strength measurements for the prevalence of diabetes mellitus were obtained using a multiple logistic regression model. Prevalence of diabetes mellitus was inversely related to TFS (OR 0.769, 95% CI 0.614–0.963), TFS/body mass (BM) (0.696, 0.545–0.889) and TFS/body mass index (BMI) (0.690, 0.539–0.882) after adjustment of covariates. Such associations were not observed in HGS (OR 0.976, 95% CI 0.773–1.232), HGS/BM (0.868, 0.666–1.133) or HGS/BMI (0.826, 0.642–1.062). These results suggested that poor TFS was associated with an increased prevalence of diabetes mellitus independent of visceral fat accumulation, but HGS was not, in middle-aged males. TFS may be a better marker for the prevalence of diabetes mellitus than HGS.
Follicular thyroid carcinoma (FTC), a form of differentiated thyroid carcinoma, is the second most common malignancy arising from thyroid follicular cells. Recently, the tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) classification for differentiated thyroid carcinoma was revised from the 7th to the 8th edition. The diagnostic criteria for poorly differentiated carcinoma (PDC) were also updated in the latest World Health Organization (WHO) classification. In this study, we investigated whether these changes are appropriate for accurately predicting prognosis. Three hundred and twenty-nine patients diagnosed with postoperative pathologically confirmed FTC, who underwent initial surgery at our hospital between 1984 and 2004, were enrolled. For this study, patients were re-evaluated and diagnosed with FTC (N = 285) or PDC (N = 44) without typical nuclear findings of papillary thyroid carcinoma. For FTC, the 8th TNM classification was a more accurate predictor of prognosis than the 7th TNM classification. In the 8th TNM classification, cause-specific survival became significantly poorer from Stage I to IVB. The cause-specific survival of PDC based on the latest WHO classification was worse than, but did not significantly differ from, that of PDC based only on the former WHO classification. For PDC, neither of the TNM classifications could accurately predict prognosis. Taken together, we conclude that (1) the 8th TNM classification more accurately reflects the prognosis of FTC than the 7th TNM classification; (2) PDC based on the former WHO classification should be retained, at least in Japan; and (3) the TNM classification may not be suitable for predicting the prognosis of PDC.
Most patients with Turner syndrome (TS) exhibit amenorrhea due to premature ovarian failure. Therefore, estrogen replacement therapy (ERT) is required; however, even after undergoing ERT, it is not rare for bone mass acquisition to be insufficient. This study was conducted in two stages, involving a cross-sectional and a prospective interventional study. We recruited 52 TS patients undergoing ERT due to amenorrhea (categorized into low (LB group; n = 23), and normal (NB group; n = 29) bone mass groups) and 7 TS patients who maintained ovarian function (spontaneous menstrual cycle group (MC group)) as controls. We compared bone associated markers between the three groups (LB, NB, and MC). Furthermore, the LB group had concomitant treatment with eldecalcitol (ELD) and ERT for 12 months. The bone mineral density (BMD) of the lumber spine (L2-4) and the bone metabolism markers were then compared before and after the treatment. The bone metabolism markers were significantly higher in the LB group than the NB and MC groups. Furthermore, with the concomitant use of ELD and ERT in the LB group, BMD increased significantly (pre-treatment 0.710 ± 0.056 g/cm2 vs. 0.736 ± 0.062 g/cm2 after 12 months; p < 0.001). TS patients with insufficient bone mass acquisition even after ERT were characterized by a higher turnover in bone metabolism. Therefore, the concomitant use of ELD was considered an effective adjuvant therapy for increasing bone mass.
Pancreatic cancer is a highly lethal malignancy. CA19-9 is a well-known marker for diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, but the serum CA19-9 level is reported to be elevated in patients with poorly controlled diabetes. This study evaluated the sensitivity, specificity, and cut-off value of serum CA19-9 for detection of pancreatic cancer in patients with diabetes. A case-control study of 236 patients was performed. The case group was selected from diabetic patients with pancreatic cancer, while one control was selected for each case from among diabetic patients without pancreatic cancer during the same period. The case group (n = 118) and the control group (n = 118) were matched for age, sex, and pancreatic cancer risk factors. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves were plotted to determine the serum CA19-9 level that predicted pancreatic cancer. Then the sensitivity and specificity of CA19-9 were calculated for the threshold value. There were no significant differences of age, sex, BMI, smoking, alcohol intake, and HbA1c between the case and control groups. According to ROC analysis, a serum CA19-9 level of 75 U/mL had the maximum sensitivity and specificity for separating diabetic patients with or without pancreatic cancer. Using this cut-off value, the sensitivity and specificity of CA19-9 for pancreatic cancer was 69.5% and 98.2%, respectively, while the area under the ROC curve was 0.875 [95%CI: 0.826–0.924]. We propose that a serum CA19-9 level of 75 U/mL should be used as the cut-off value when screening patients with diabetes for pancreatic cancer.
Early diagnosis and optimal management for steroid 5α-reductase type 2 deficiency (5α-RD2) patients are major challenges for clinicians and mutation analysis for the 5α-reductase type 2 (SRD5A2) gene is the golden standard for the diagnosis of the disease. In silico analysis of this enzyme has not been reported due to the lack of appropriate model. Moreover, the histological and pathological changes of the gonads are largely unknown. In the present study, a 5α-RD2 patient born with abnormal external genitalia was studied and mutation analysis for SRD5A2 gene was conducted. Moreover, we constructed the homology modeling of 5α-reductase using SWISS-MODEL, followed by the molecular docking study. Furthermore, immunohistochemical staining of Ki67 for the testes tissue was conducted to investigate the potential pathological characteristics. The patient had male (46, XY) chromosomes but presented female characteristics, and the mutation analysis identified a heterozygotes mutation (p.Q6X, p.R246Q) in SRD5A2 gene. In silico analysis elucidated the potential effect of the mutation on enzyme activity. Immunohistochemical staining for the excised testes showed that 30%–50% of the germ cells were Ki67 positive, which indicated the early neoplastic potential. In conclusion, we analyzed the genotype-phenotype correlations of 5α-RD2 caused by a heterozygotes mutation (p.Q6X, p.R246Q). Importantly, we conducted the homology modeling and molecular docking for the first time, which provided a homology model for further investigations. Immunohistochemical results suggested gonadectomy or testis descent should be performed early for 5α-RD2 patient, as delayed treatment would have maintained the testes in a tumorigenic condition.
Treatment-related quality of life (QOL) is an important aspect of diabetes management. However, no studies have compared the influence of dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitors versus alpha-glucosidase inhibitors on treatment-related QOL. This prespecified sub-analysis of the Linagliptin Study of Effects on Postprandial blood glucose (L-STEP) compared the effects of linagliptin (5 mg once daily) and voglibose (0.2 mg/meal thrice daily) on treatment-related QOL in Japanese patients with type 2 diabetes (T2DM) inadequately controlled with diet and exercise therapy. Among 366 subjects in the original study, 182 in the linagliptin group and 173 in the voglibose group were included in this analysis. The outcome of this study was change in QOL as assessed by the Diabetes Therapy-Related Quality of Life 17 (DTR-QOL17) questionnaire from baseline to week 12. Compared with baseline data, total DTR-QOL17 scores were significantly higher after 12 weeks of linagliptin and voglibose treatment. The change in the total DTR-QOL17 score and the score of one domain, burden on social activities and daily activities, was significantly greater in the linagliptin group than in the voglibose group. In addition, only linagliptin treatment was identified as a factor associated with an increased total DTR-QOL17 score. Linagliptin is superior to voglibose in terms of improving treatment-related QOL in Japanese patients with T2DM.
Metabolically healthy obese (MHO) individual is known to be defended from the metabolic complications of obesity. Leukoaraiosis, which is commonly detected on brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), is now recognized as a risk of stroke, dementia and death. However, the association between MHO and the prevalence of leukoaraiosis is unclear. In this cross-sectional study of 796 participants who received a medical examination program, we investigated the association between MHO and the prevalence of leukoaraiosis. We used common clinical markers for definition of metabolic healthy status: blood pressure, fasting plasma glucose, triglycerides and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations. Obesity was defined by body mass index ≥25.0 kg/m2. We diagnosed leukoaraiosis by fluid-attenuated inversion recovery without hypointensity on T1-weighted images or the presence of a hyperintensity on T2-weighted images. The crude prevalence proportion of leukoaraiosis was 44.5% (case/n = 171/384) in metabolically healthy nonobese (MHNO) individual, 46.3% (44/95) in MHO individual, 62.3% (114/183) in metabolically unhealthy nonobese (MUNO) individual or 56.6% (77/136) in MUO individual. The odds ratios of prevalence of leukoaraiosis were 1.19 (95% CI 0.74–1.90, p = 0.471) for MHO, 1.79 (1.22–2.62, p = 0.003) for MUNO and 1.56 (1.03–2.37, p = 0.037) for MUO individuals after adjusting for sex, age, smoking statues, habit of exercise and alcohol, compared with MHNO individual. We revealed that MHO individuals were not related with the higher risk of leukoaraiosis, whereas MUNO and MUO individuals were.