Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Heart Disease, Kidney Stones / 10.08.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ashish Verma, MD Assistant Professor, Nephrology Department of Medicine Boston University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you tell us a little about aldosterone? Response: “Recent randomized, controlled trials have shown that a drug called finerenone is effective in delaying CKD progression and adverse cardiovascular outcomes in patients with chronic kidney disease and diabetes. However, the role of aldosterone in this process was not directly investigated and levels of the hormone were not measured,” “Since excessive levels of aldosterone is common, yet mostly unrecognized, we hypothesized that one reason why finerenone was effective in lowering the risk of CKD progression was that it was treating unrecognized high concentrations of the hormone.” To study this we investigated the associations between aldosterone concentrations in the blood and kidney disease progression among 3680 participants in the Chronic Renal Insufficiency Cohort study, which ran in seven clinics in the US between 2003 and 2008. The participants were aged between 21 and 74 years old. Aldosterone is a steroid hormone secreted by the adrenal glands, which sit above the kidneys. Its main role is to regulate salt and water in the body, and so it plays a central role in controlling blood pressure. Too much of it can lead to high blood pressure, cardiovascular and kidney diseases. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Endocrinology, Hip Fractures, NEJM, Osteoporosis, Vitamin D / 27.07.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Meryl S. LeBoff, MD Chief, Calcium and Bone SectionDirector of the Skeletal Health and Osteoporosis CenterDirector, Bone Density UnitDistinguished Chair in Skeletal Health and Osteoporosis Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Endocrinology, Diabetes and HypertensionWomen's Health Brigham And Women's Hospital JoAnn E. Manson, MD, DrPH Professor, Epidemiology, Harvard T.H. Chan School Of Public Health Michael and Lee Bell Professor of Women's Health, Medicine, Harvard Medical School Chief, Preventive Medicine, Brigham And Women's Hospital Co-Director, Womens Health, Brigham And Women's Hospital   MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings? Response: Osteoporosis is a major public health problem. Although supplemental vitamin D has been widely used to reduce the risk of fractures in the general population, studies of the effects of vitamin D on fractures, the most important bone health outcome, have been conflicting. Randomized controlled trials, the highest quality studies, from around the world have shown benefit, no effect, or even harm of supplemental vitamin D on risk of fractures. Some of the trials used bolus dosing, had small samples sizes or short study duration, and co-administered calcium. No large RCTS of this scale tested whether daily supplemental vitamin D (without co-administration with calcium) prevented fractures in the US population. To fill these knowledge gaps, we tested the hypothesis in this ancillary study to VITAL, whether daily supplemental vitamin D3 reduced the risk of incident total, non-spine and hip fractures in women and men in the US. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Nutrition, Testosterone, Weight Research / 11.03.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Joe Whittaker, MSc Nutritionist MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: There are several studies showing a generational decline in men's testosterone levels, beginning in the 1970s. This is due to a variety of factors such as poorer diets, lack of physical activity, and increasing toxin exposure. Therefore, there is intense research interest in ways we can optimise testosterone levels, to combat this generational decline. Some well-known studies have found low-carbohydrate diets boost testosterone levels, but others have show the reverse effect. So, to settle the controversy we gathered and reanalysed all known studies on the topic. There was also the question of high protein diets and their effects on testosterone, which are currently disputed. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Endocrinology, Insomnia, Menopause, Sleep Disorders, Weight Research / 23.03.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Leilah K. Grant, PhD Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Medicine Brigham and Women’s Hospital Harvard Medical School  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The prevalence of obesity increases in women around the age of menopause which increases the risk of diseases like diabetes and heart disease. Changes in hormones, like estrogen, are thought to contribute to weight gain during menopause, but other common symptoms of menopause such as sleep interruption may also play a role. While short sleep is known to adversely affect metabolism, little is known about the metabolic consequences of the type of sleep disruption most common in menopausal women – increased nighttime awakenings (i.e., sleep interruption) caused by hot flashes, but no change in overall sleep duration. We therefore did this study to see how an experimental model menopause-related sleep interruption would affect metabolic outcomes that may contribute to weight gain.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Heart Disease, Women's Heart Health / 05.08.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr.  Clare Oliver-Williams PhD University of Cambridge MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Women with PCOS are known to be at greater risk of CVD, however the some symptoms (menstrual irregularity) of PCOS are specific to reproductive age women. This raises the question of whether CVD risk varies across by age, which was the focus of my research with colleagues at the University of Copenhagen. MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report? Response: Women with PCOS were at 19% higher CVD risk than women without CVD, however once the association was stratified by age, there was no  evidence for a higher CVD risk for women older than 50.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Thyroid Disease / 11.06.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: https://www.horizontherapeutics.com/ Elizabeth H.Z. Thompson, Ph.D. Group vice president, Clinical Development and External Search Horizon Therapeutics MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This study provides the first U.S.-based validation of the Graves' Ophthalmopathy Quality of Life (GO-QOL) questionnaire. For your background, Graves’ Ophthalmopathy is another term used to describe Thyroid Eye Disease (TED). The GO-QOL questionnaire includes eight questions, each on visual functioning and appearance-related impacts of TED on patients. Though widely used and validated in Europe, the relevance of the questions for patients in the United States hasn’t previously been explored.For this evaluation, 13 eligible TED patients completed the questionnaire and then underwent a separate cognitive QOL-related interview. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Environmental Risks, JCEM, Menopause / 05.06.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ning Ding MPH, PhD candidate Sung Kyun Park Sc.D, MPH Associate Professor Department of Epidemiology University of Michigan School of Public Health Ann Arbor, MI 48109  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), also known as ‘forever chemicals’, are a family of synthetic chemicals used in a wide variety of nonstick and waterproof products and firefighting foams. The main issue is that PFAS are everywhere. It has been estimated that 110 million Americans, 1 out of three, may consume drinking water contaminated with PFAS. PFAS are very persistent and once PFAS enter the body, they don't break down and build up in the body over time. (more…)
Author Interviews, CMAJ, Endocrinology, OBGYNE / 02.06.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lois Donovan MD FRCPC Clinical Professor Cumming School of Medicine Division on Endocrinology and Metabolism and Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology University of Calgary MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? 1) We observed in our clinical practices that minor TSH elevations in early pregnancy frequently normalized without intervention. 2) Recent randomized control trials have failed to show benefit of treating women with levothyroxine with minor TSH elevations in pregnancy  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Weight Research / 04.05.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Florian Keifer, M.D., Ph.D Associate Professor of Medicine Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism Department of Medicine III Medical University of Vienna MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Brown fat, in contrast to white fat, burns significant amounts of chemical energy through heat production. In numerous animal models the activation of brown adipose tissue (BAT) increases energy expenditure and counteracts weight gain. Therefore BAT has been established as a promising target in the fight against obesity and related metabolic disorders. In humans, BAT can be activated by moderate cold exposure, however the function and relevance of BAT are incompletely understood. Using PET scans we identified two groups of individuals those with and without active BAT and studied their differences in energy expenditure and blood fatty acid composition.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, OBGYNE / 14.04.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Open Space Yoga Hawaii” by Open Space Yoga Hawaii is licensed under CC BY 2.0Diana Speelman, Ph.D. Director of Research for the College of Medicine Associate Professor of Biochemistry Reproductive System Course Coordinator L|E|C|O|M Erie, PA 16509 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you briefly explain what is meant by PCOS? Response: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common hormone disorder in women of reproductive age.  It is characterized by high androgen levels (e.g., testosterone) in the blood and irregular menstrual cycles.  Despite affecting 5-15% of women, its cause is unknown.  While medications can be used to reduce androgen levels, or help achieve menstrual regularity or stimulate ovulation, these often have undesirable side effects.  Our goal was to investigate the effectiveness of non-pharmacologic approaches, including yoga, on improving the characteristics associated with the disorder.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Ophthalmology, Thyroid Disease / 06.04.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Raymond Douglas MD PhD Board Certified Oculoplastic Surgeon Beverly Hills, CA  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you briefly explain what is meant by proptosis?  How does teprotumumab work? Response: This study provides pooled efficacy data from the Phase 2 and 3 clinical trials of teprotumumab showing that the recently FDA-approved medicine effectively reduces proptosis, also known as eye bulging, in patients with Thyroid Eye Disease (TED) regardless of age, gender and smoking status. Proptosis is one of the most debilitating symptoms of TED, especially given the accompanying pain, vision impairment and emotional distress. Teprotumumab is a fully human monoclonal antibody and a targeted inhibitor of the IGF-1 receptor. In patients with Thyroid Eye Disease, the IGF-1 receptor is overexpressed on orbital tissues and when activated, causes inflammation and enlargement of ocular muscles, expansion of orbital tissue and fat and forward displacement of the eye, resulting in eye bulging. The proteins in teprotumumab target and bind to the IGF-1 receptor and inhibit its function, thereby reducing inflammation, preventing tissue expansion behind the eye, and preventing muscle and fat tissue remodeling. Based on this mechanism of action, it is believed that teprotumumab addresses the underlying biology of the disease.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Gender Differences, Genetic Research, Science / 22.02.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lawrence C. Layman, M.D. Robert B. Greenblatt, M.D., Distinguished Chair in Endocrinology Professor & Chief Section of Reproductive Endocrinology, Infertility, & Genetics Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology Director, REI Fellowship Program Co-Director, MD/PhD Program Department of Neuroscience & Regenerative Medicine Department of Physiology Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: I have taken care of many transgender patients over the past 20 years. We think there is a biological basis for transgender identity rather than choice. Animal models suggest that exposure to estrogen or testosterone at a critical time during development will render an animal of either sex to behave as male with aggressive behavior and they will mount females. If this pathway is blocked, then the end result is more receptive, female sexual behavior. We thought that variants in genes involved in metabolizing these hormones in the brain could play some role in transgender identity. Because the cost of sequencing all genes was similar to the cost of looking for changes in just these genes, we performed whole exome sequencing (sequencing the protein coding regions of genes) on about 30 transgender patients. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Pharmaceutical Companies, Testosterone / 18.02.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Robert E. Dudley, Ph.D. Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President Clarus Therapeutics Dr. Dudley discusses the recent announcement that Clarus Therapeutics, Inc. has launched  JATENZO® (testosterone undecanoate) capsules for the treatment of appropriate men with testosterone deficiency (hypogonadism): MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this announcement? Response: JATENZO® is the first and only oral softgel testosterone undecanoate and the first oral testosterone product approved by the U.S. FDA in more than 60 years. JATENZO is indicated for testosterone replacement therapy in adult males for conditions associated with a deficiency or absence of endogenous testosterone. The launch of JATENZO means that physicians and men living with testosterone deficiency due to genetic or structural abnormalities finally have a safe and effective oral testosterone replacement therapy. We are proud to commercially launch this unique oral formulation to healthcare providers and the appropriate patients who they treat. JATENZO is now available at pharmacies across the country. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, NEJM, Thyroid Disease / 23.01.2020

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Raymond S Douglas MD PhD Professor of Surgery, Division of Ophthalmology Director of the Orbital and Thyroid Eye Disease Program Cedars Sinai Medical Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Thyroid eye disease (TED) is a debilitating disease that affects all aspects of a patients life. It is often associated with Graves' disease and thyroid abnormalities. TED causes profound bulging of the eyes impairing vision, causing eye pain and facial disfigurement. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Geriatrics, Thyroid Disease / 15.12.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Carol Chiung-Hui Peng, MD Department of Internal Medicine University of Maryland Medical Center Baltimore, MD  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In recently published meta-analyses, focusing on the general population, showed that both overt hypothyroidism and subclinical hypothyroidism were linked to higher all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. However, there is still debate and conflicting evidence on managing overt and subclinical hypothyroidism in the elderly. This study aimed to evaluate and confirm the association between hypothyroidism and mortality in the elderly population. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Stem Cells, Thyroid Disease / 05.11.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Terry Davies, MD Co-Director, The Thyroid Center at Mount Sinai Union Square Professor, Medicine, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Many tissues contain stem cells that are responsible for regeneration and repair after injury. The mechanism of thyroid regeneration and the role of thyroid stem cells in this process is poorly understood. This an exploration of how the thyroid gland repairs itself. Using a mouse model we found that a damaged gland can correct itself within 4 weeks and this involves a rapid increase in stem cells driving the repair.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Diabetes, Endocrinology, Menopause / 18.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Sopio Tatulashvili Avicenne Hospital Bobigny, FranceDr Sopio Tatulashvili Avicenne Hospital Bobigny, France MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Diabetes and pre-diabetes are associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Early screening and the treatment of glucose metabolism disorders could lower the risk of further complications. Furthermore, type 2 diabetes can be prevented. For this purpose, it is of major importance to better identify the risk factors of type 2 diabetes. Hormonal factors are increasingly suspected to play a role in the etiology of type 2 diabetes. The aim of this study was to determine the associations between various hormonal factors and the risk of incident type 2 diabetes in the large prospective female E3N (Etude Épidémiologique de Femmes de la Mutuelle Générale de L’Education Nationale) cohort study. Based on a very detailed set of information available in 83,799 women from the large prospective E3N cohort study followed for 22 years, we have been able to clarify the relationships between various hormonal factors and type 2 diabetes risk.   (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, NIH, Pediatrics / 19.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kenneth S. Korach, Ph.D. Senior Principal Investigator Chief, Receptor Biology Section Reproductive and Developmental Biology Laboratory NIEHS/NIH MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Lavender oil is among the most popular essential oils used today. Our society deems essential oils and other homeopathic remedies as safe alternatives for medical treatment, personal hygiene commodities, aromatherapy, and cleaning products; however, there are many natural products that have effects on the human body, similar to potent synthetic drugs. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Hormone Therapy, JAMA, Schizophrenia / 01.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Mark Weiser, M.D. Associate Director for Treatment Trials The Stanley Medical Research Institute Kensington, MD 20895 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Over the years many theories have been proposed explaining schizophrenia, and studies tested compounds based on these theories.  Some showed improvement in symptoms, but these positive findings were often not later replicated, and the theory discarded. Over the past 15 years several studies performed in Australia by Dr. Jayshri Kulkarni (Molecular psychiatry. 2015;20(6):695) showed positive effects of estrogen patches on symptoms in women with schizophrenia. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, OBGYNE / 08.05.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Prof. Arri Coomarasamy MBChB, MD, FRCOG Institute of Metabolism and Systems Research Professor of Gynaecology Director of Tommy's National Centre for Miscarriage Research University of Birmingham MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Progesterone hormone is known to be essential to maintain a pregnancy. Researchers and clinicians have debated for over 50 years whether progesterone supplementation in women with early pregnancy bleeding could rescue a pregnancy from miscarrying. There were some clinical studies suggesting progesterone could be useful, but the studies were of poor quality and small, so we could not be certain. So the current study, called the PRISM trial, was conducted using very sound methods and on a large population of women, in fact over 4000 women in the UK, to produce a definitive answer to this question. Overall, there were more babies in the group of women given progesterone compared with the group of women given the dummy placebo tablets, but there was statistical uncertainty in this finding. However, when we looked at the sub-population of women who were at high risk of miscarriage because of not only bleeding in early pregnancy but also having a history of previous miscarriage, we found progesterone was shown to have clear benefit. This is a hugely important finding as there is now a treatment option to women with early pregnancy bleeding and a history of previous miscarriages. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Gender Differences, Social Issues / 18.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Eider Pascual-Sagastizabal, PhD Professor of Evolutionary Psychology and Education University School of Education of Bilbao (Leioa) University of the Basque Country  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The search for markers of aggression during childhood is a particularly relevant area of research, since the results of intervention and prevention during this developmental stage are more promising than those obtained during later stages. The psychobiological approach to aggressive behavior is of particular importance, as it analyzes the joint, interactive influence of both psychological and biological variables. We have found that there are different interactions on a biological and psychological level that could account for aggressive behavior in children. More deeply, empathy and hormones could together account for aggressive behavior. In fact, the interactions were different for boys and for girls.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Thyroid Disease / 31.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Terry Davies, MD, Professor Medicine, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Co-Director, The Thyroid Center, Mount Sinai Union Square MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The receptor for thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) is the major antigen for Graves' disease and patients have unique antibodies to the TSHR which stimulate excessive thyroid hormone secretion. We have characterized a variant TSHR called v1.3 which is a splicing variant which we find expressed in thyroid, bone marrow, thymus and adipose tissue and incorporates an intronic sequence which is fully translated.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Weight Research / 27.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Liya Kerem, MD Fellow, Pediatric Endocrine Unit Massachusetts General Hospital for Children Harvard Medical School MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: The hypothalamic neurohormone Oxytocin (OXT), shown to decrease food intake in animals and humans, is a promising novel treatment for obesity. We previously showed that in men with overweight/obesity, intranasal (IN)OXT reduced the fMRI activation in the ventral tegmental area (VTA), the origin of the mesolimbic dopaminergic reward system, in response to high-calorie food vs non-food visual stimuli. Here, we employed fMRI functional connectivity analysis, which better characterizes the exchange in information between neural systems in a context-dependent manner. We hypothesized that Oxytocin would reduce the functional connectivity of the VTA with food motivation brain areas in response to high-calorie foods.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Duke, Endocrinology, Environmental Risks, Thyroid Disease, Weight Research / 27.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Christopher D. Kassotis, Ph.D. NRSA Postdoctoral Research Scholar Stapleton Lab Duke University Nicholas School of the Environment Durham, NC 27708  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
  • So this was something that Heather Stapleton had been curious about for years, as she's been one of several researchers characterizing the hundreds of chemicals that have been measured in indoor house dust. Before I came to Duke, one of her PhD students had measured the ability of many common indoor contaminants to activate the peroxisome proliferator activated receptor gamma (PPARg). The majority of these chemicals did, often quite well, which led to them testing indoor house dust extracts, also finding that the majority of dust extracts were also able to do so at very low levels. As PPARg is often considered the master regulator of fat cell development, the next obvious question was whether these common contaminants (and house dust) could promote fat cell development in cell models. My first work at Duke evaluated a suite of common indoor contaminants, finding that many of these chemicals could promote fat cell development, and that low levels of house dust extracts did as well.
  • We next explored this more systematically in a group of adults involved in a thyroid cancer cohort (this was just recently published in Science of the Total Environment: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0048969719307715?dgcid=author
  • In this study we evaluated the extent to which house dust extracts could promote fat cell development in a common cell model, and associated this with the metabolic health of adults living in these homes. We found that the greater extent of fat cell development was associated with significantly greater thyroid stimulating hormone concentrations (control residents only, with no evidence of thyroid dysfunction) and lower free triiodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4). We further found a significant and positive association between extent of fat cell development and the body mass index (BMI) of all adults in the study. So this suggested that the indoor environment might play a role in the BMI and metabolic health of residents, and we next wondered if this would be more pronounced in children, who may be exposed to these contaminants during a critical window of development.
  • The next step, for our current work, was to substantiate these effects in a larger group of households, each with children.
  • Our major conclusions thus far have been that ~80% of house dust extracts promote significant fat cell development in a cell model - either via development from precursor cells into mature fat cells, measured via accumulation of lipids into the cells, or via the proliferation of those precursor fat cells. We also reported positive correlations of fat cell development with the concentrations of 70 different contaminants in the dust from these homes, suggesting that mixtures of contaminants are likely all acting weakly to produce these effects in combination. We’ve also begun to assess the other chemicals present in dust - chemistry can be either targeted (measuring concentrations of specific known chemicals in a sample), or non-targeted, where you try and determine the identity of the other chemicals in a sample. This has greater utility for identifying many more chemicals, though you will often not get chemical concentrations from this, nor absolute confirmed identification - just varying degrees of certainty based on evidence. Thus far we report approximately 35,000 chemicals in house dust samples across this study, and differential analyses have begun to pick out the few (less than 10 in each case) chemicals most differentially expressed between samples that exhibit high degrees of fat cell development in the lab vs inactive samples, for example, or which are differentially present in the homes of children categorized as obese or overweight. We are now working to confirm identity of these select contaminants that are more likely to be causative factors in the results we have observed.
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Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Gender Differences, Hormone Therapy / 26.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Joshua Safer, MD, Executive Director Center for Transgender Medicine and Surgery Mount Sinai Health System Senior Faculty, Medicine, Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The standard trans feminizing hormone regimen includes estrogen both to suppress testosterone and so that the individual has sufficient circulating sex hormone in the body for good bone health. After orchiectomy, there is no need to suppress testosterone because the levels are very low and it is common to cut the estrogen dose in half.  Cis women with premature ovarian failure often take about 2 mg of estradiol daily so that dose has seemed reasonable for trans women without testes.  However, when my co-author Sira Korpaisarn and I checked estradiol levels and gonadotropins (pituitary hormones, LH and FSH) as a guide to dosing, we found that based on that testing, trans women may require higher doses of estrogens than the 2 mg that we expected. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Genetic Research / 24.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Emily J. Gallagher, MD Assistant Professor of Medicine Endocrinology, Diabetes and Bone Disease Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Syndrome Type 2 (MEN2) is an inherited endocrine disorder characterized by the development of pheochromocytoma, medullary thyroid carcinoma (MTC) and parathyroid tumors. It occurs due to activating missense variants in the RET gene. The estimated prevalence of MEN2 is 1 per 30,000 in the general population. Through a collaboration between The Center for Genomic Health, the Charles Bronfman Institute for Personalized Medicine, and the Division of Endocrinology at Mount Sinai, our aim was to investigate the prevalence and clinical manifestations of pathogenic RET variants in the multi-ethnic BioMe Biobank. The BioMe Biobank is an electronic health record-linked biobank with exome sequencing data available for more than 30,000 patients recruited across The Mount Sinai Health System. (more…)
Author Interviews, Endocrinology, Pediatrics / 03.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yehuda Limony, MD, MSc Pediatric Endocrinology Unit Faculty of Health Sciences Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Clalit Health Services Beer-Sheva, Israel  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The variability of the onset age of puberty is the subject of many studies in numerous disciplines; nonetheless, the timing of puberty remains an enigma. The conventional paradigm is that the time of onset of puberty is genetically determined even though genome-wide association studies explain only a very low percentage of the physiologic variability. It is commonly believed, therefore, that many environmental factors interfere with the genetics of timing of puberty. On the other hand, children grow toward an adult height that is the standardized average of parents' height called "target height". That is why children are usually similar in height to parents. This targeted growth process is evident especially in children whose height percentile in childhood is different from their target height percentile (we called this difference the "height gap"). It is known that the timing of puberty is associated with adult height: earlier puberty causes shorter adult height and vice versa. We hypothesized that the targeted process of growth involves adaptation of the age of onset of puberty in accordance with the height gap. (more…)
Author Interviews, BMJ, Endocrinology, Heart Disease, Hormone Therapy, Menopause, Thromboembolism / 11.01.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yana Vinogradova, PhD Research Fellow Department of Primary Care School of Medicine University of Nottingham University Park, Nottingham MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: The study targeted middle age women going through menopause.  This is the stage of life when women naturally reach the end of their reproductive life and their hormones gradually decrease.  Some women experience unpleasant effects such as hot flushes, night sweats, mood swings, memory and concentration loss, headaches.  Quality of life may be severely affected.  Hormone replacement therapy uses a class of drugs, which, like all drugs, have side effects.   VTE is a serious side effect which can have a lethal outcome. There are different preparations of hormones available for such women.  Some of them were extensively studied in a large American Trial Women’s Health Initiative and showed the risk of VTE to be twice as high for women who took them.  However, these well-studied drugs are mostly prescribed in America.  The more popular drugs in Europe and the UK have been much less studied, so it was unclear how they compared.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Endocrinology, Prostate Cancer / 14.11.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Vincenza Conteduca, MD, PhD Istituto Scientifico Romagnolo per lo Studio e la Cura dei Tumori (IRST) Srl - IRCCS Meldola , Italy MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: In our previous publications, we showed that the study of plasma cell-free DNA holds promise for improving treatment choice in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). Specifically, we demonstrated that the detection in plasma of aberrations (copy number alterations and/or point somatic mutations) of androgen receptor (AR), using an easy and robust multiplex droplet digital PCR method, predicted an adverse outcome in mCRPC patients treated with second-generation AR-directed therapies (abiraterone or enzalutamide) in both settings: chemotherapy-naïve and post-docetaxel. This current multi-institution work builds on our previous discoveries. We investigated the association of androgen receptor status and survival in men treated with docetaxel. Moreover, we performed an exploratory analysis in patients treated with docetaxel or AR-directed therapies as first-line therapy. Interestingly, we observed that plasma AR-gained patients do not have a worse outcome compared to AR-normal patients when treated with docetaxel as first-line therapy. This introduces the opportunity to use plasma to select for docetaxel in preference to androgen receptor-directed therapies in AR gained mCRPC patients. (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Endocrinology, JCEM, OBGYNE, Yale / 25.10.2018

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Valerie A. Flores, MD Clinical Instructor Division of Reproductive Endocrinology & Infertility Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences Yale School of Medicine - Yale New Haven Hospital MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Endometriosis is a debilitating gynecologic disease that affects 1 in 10 reproductive-aged women, causing pain and infertility.  It is a hormonally dependent disorder— estrogens promote growth of endometriosis, while progesterone inhibits estrogen-dependent proliferation. Although progestin-based therapies (including combined oral contraceptives) are first-line therapy in the management of endometriosis-associated pain, response to progestins is variable and currently unpredictable. (more…)