The International Journal of Romanian Society of Endocrinology / Registered in 1938

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  • General Endocrinology

    Malutan A, Drugan T, Georgescu C, Ciortea R, Bucuri C, Bobric A, Rada MP, Mihu D

    Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor Serum Levels in Women with Advanced Endometriosis

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2016 12(1): 7-13 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2016.7

    Context. Endometriosis is a common gynecological disease, characterized by ectopic deposits of endometrial tissue outside of the uterine cavity, and it is associated with pelvic pain and infertility, with an important impact on the quality of life. At this point there is a controversy regarding the etiology and pathophysiology of endometriosis and it seems that pro-angiogenic growth factors might be involved, but their role is not completely understood. Objective. To evaluate the serum concentration of the main growth factors in patients with diagnosed endometriosis compared to healthy controls. S ubjects and Methods. A total of 157 women were divided into two study groups (Group I – endometriosis; Group 2 – healthy women). Serum levels of VEGF, G-CSF, GM-CSF, b-FGF, EGF, and HGF were measured with Human Multiplex Cytokine Panels. Results. VEGF serum levels were significantly lower in women with endometriosis compared to controls (1.924±0.145 compared to 1.806±0.078 pg/mL, p<0.001). Serum levels of GM-CSF, b-FGF, EGF, and HGF respectively did not differ significantly between patients with endometriosis and healthy controls. G-CSF had a very low detection rate. Conclusions. The present study showed that VEGF serum levels are significantly lower in endometriosis patients compared to healthy controls, indicating a possible role in endometriosis pathogenesis.
  • General Endocrinology

    Kacso A, Goia-Socol M, Hazi G, Tomoaia G, Kacso IM, Georgescu CE

    Effect of Experimental Dysglycemia on Under-Carboxylated Osteocalcin Production in Human Primary Osteoblast-Like Cell Cultures

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2018 14(1): 11-15 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2018.11

    Context. The undercarboxylated form of osteocalcin (ucOC) and osteoprotegerin (OPG) are bonederived molecules involved in the endocrine crosstalk governing the bone, the adipose tissue and the pancreas. In addition, glucocorticoids are major determinants of both insulin resistance and osteoporosis. Objective. We aimed to investigate the response of ucOC and OPG to dysglycemia and/or dexamethasone (DXM) in primary human osteoblastic cell (HOC) cultures. Design and methods. Third-passage sub-confluent primary HOC cultures were treated with glucose: 2.8 mmol/L, 5.6 mmol/L, 11.1 mmol/L and 28 mmol/L, respectively. Alternatively, HOC cultures were subjected to DXM 1 μmol/L. In more complex experiments, HOC cultures were pre-treated with glucose (5.6 mmol/L) with/without insulin (1 pmol/L) followed by DXM (1 μmol/L). 24-hours posttreatment, culture medium ucOC and OPG were measured by ELISA. Results. ucOC production differed significantly (p<0.05) between cell groups, decreasing in a dosedependent manner as glucose concentration in the medium increased. Insulin prevented this effect. OPG levels appeared not to be significantly influenced by the hyperglycemic culture medium and were not related to ucOC concentration (p>0.05). Addition of DXM resulted in significantly lower ucOC concentrations compared to vehicle-treated cells (p<0.05). However, the effect of insulin co-treatment on ucOC was not counteracted by DXM (p<0.05). Conclusions. An obvious alteration of OC production/metabolism was observed as glucose levels changed in the bone microenvironment, to potentially be involved in diabetes-related osteopenia. DXM suppressed ucOC levels however not in insulin-rich environment.
  • General Endocrinology

    Georgescu C, Georgescu B, Mihu D, Porumb C, Duncea I

    Relationships of Umbilical and Maternal Adiponectin, Resistin and Osteoprotegerin to Maternaland Newborn Anthropometric Characteristics

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2011 7(1): 11-21 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2011.11

    Introduction. Adiponectin, resistin and osteoprotegerin (OPG) are cytokines expressed in the adipose tissue. Pregnancy is associated with gradually increased maternal\r\nlevels of these molecules, also detected in significant amounts in umbilical cord blood serum samples.\r\nAim, patients and methods. To establish the relationships of maternal and umbilical adiponectin, resistin and OPG levels to both maternal and fetal anthropometric measurements and insulin sensitivity, 28 mother-newborn pairs were enrolled in the study. Blood samples were collected in a fasting state, after delivery, and serum insulin, C-peptide, sex hormone-binding globulin, adipocytokines, OPG and bone specific alkaline phosphatase (BAP) were measured.\r\nResults. Compared to maternal values, umbilical serum adiponectin levels were about 3-fold higher; additionally, significantly higher resistin and lower OPG levels were\r\nobserved. Stratification of umbilical and maternal adiponectin levels according to tertiles of birth body weight demonstrated significantly lower maternal adiponectin\r\nlevels by tertiles of neonatal body weight. No relationships were noticed between infant birth weight and maternal or umbilical serum resistin and OPG, respectively. Umbilical resistin was significantly associated to both\r\nmaternal resistin and umbilical adiponectin. Multiple regression analysis showed that maternal BMI, umbilical insulin, C-peptide and resistin explained 71.83% of umbilical serum adiponectin variability. Umbilical resistin was independently predicted by umbilical adiponectin, umbilical C-peptide and maternal BMI, and the model explained 81.49% of umbilical resistin levels.\r\nConclusions. In human, umbilical serum adiponectin and resistin levels are significantly higher compared to adults. These adipokines may mediate the effects of maternal body mass on fetal development. The biology of the\r\nOPG/RANKL cytokine system in fetuses and newborns needs further research.
  • Endocrine Care

    Pop GD, Duncea I, Georgescu C, Hazi G, Dragotoiu G, Leucuta DC

    Estimation of 25(OH)D levels required for maintaining a normal bone turnover in healthy aging men

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2007 3(1): 31-44 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2007.31

    Introduction. Vitamin D deficiency has been proven to have a deleterious effect on bone remodeling and bone mineral density, by inducing secondary hyperparathyroidism. The lack of a present consensus on optimal serum 25(OH)D levels required for the preservation of physiologic bone metabolism renders its follow-up difficult.\r\nMaterials and Methods. The cross-sectional study was performed on a sample of 69 healthy men aged 50-70. Serum 25(OH)D, total testosterone, sex hormone binding globulin, s-CTX (Crosslaps), and osteocalcin were assessed. BMD was measured by DXA at lumbar spine and hip levels. Statistical relationships between these parameters were calculated.\r\nResults. We found a significantly negative correlation between 25(OH)D and s-CTX (r = -0.30. p<0.05), but not between 25(OH)D and osteocalcin, although s-CTX correlated positively with osteocalcin (r = 0.49, p<0.001). Serum CTX was negatively correlated with lumbar BMD (r = -0.35, p<0.001), while osteocalcin was negatively correlated with total hip BMD (r = -0.26, p<0.01). Comparing mean s-CTX levels in insufficient and sufficient subjects at different cut-off points for 25(OH)D, significant differences appeared the strongest at 60 ng/ml. The percentage of 25(OH)D deficient or insufficient subjects was 50.7% at a 30 ng/ml cut-off point.\r\nConclusions. The results of the present study confirm the benefit in maintaining a normal bone turnover offered by serum 25(OH)D in the upper normal range. The large percentage of patients with vitamin D insufficiency reinforce the necessity of a specific follow-up and of epidemiologic studies dedicated to our geographic area.
  • Endocrine Care

    Ghervan CM, Nemes C, Valea A, Silaghi A, Georgescu CE, Ghervan L

    Ketoconazole Treatment in Cushing’s Syndrome – Results of a Tertiary Referral Center in Romania

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2015 11(1): 46-54 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2015.46

    Introduction. First election treatment in Cushing’s syndrome is the surgical therapy (pituitary or adrenal). Pharmacotherapy is used: before surgery, when the surgery was ineffective, in association with radiotherapy or in cases of refuse or contraindications for surgery. Aim of the study. Testing the effectiveness and safety of Ketoconazole treatment in patients with Cushing’s syndrome. Methods. We studied 12 patients with Cushing’s syndrome treated with Ketoconazole between 2010 and 2013. We followed cortisol levels before and during treatment, the doses of Ketoconazole and the time required for normalization of cortisol, “the escape syndrome” and the adverse effects. Results. Eleven (91,66%) patients had ACTH – dependent Cushing’s syndrome. The mean basal cortisol before initiation of the therapy was 404.4 ± 71 ng/ml. Two thirds (eight) patients presented a normalization of serum cortisol levels with 300-800 mg Ketoconazole/day, during a mean of 8.5 weeks. Only one patient presented an “escape syndrome” and one presented adrenal insufficiency. None of the patients showed significant side effects under the treatment. Conclusions. Ketoconazole therapy is well tolerated and is effective in most patients with Cushing’s syndrome even in long term use. The resistance and the escape from the effect of the treatment is possible, but rare, patients requiring close monitoring during therapy.
  • Endocrine Care

    Mihu D, Georgescu C, Mihu C, Costin N, Blaga L, Pop R

    High maternal serum leptin and interleukin-6 levels in pre-eclampsia and relationships with clinical and metabolical parameters of disease severity and pregnancy outcome

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2009 5(1): 49-60 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2009.49

    Background. The pathogenesis of pre-eclampsia involves inflammation, endothelial\r\ndysfunction and enhanced oxidative stress. Interleukin (IL)-6 is a major pro-inflammatory\r\ncytokine, while leptin is released in large amounts by the adipose tissue, but also by placenta.\r\nAim. The present study aims to evaluate total maternal serum leptin and IL-6 levels in\r\npre-eclampsia compared to normal pregnancy and non-pregnant status.\r\nMethods. We enrolled 65 women in a transversal study; pre-eclampsia was diagnosed\r\nin 25 (group 1), 25 women had a normal pregnancy (group 2), while in 15 pregnancy was\r\nexcluded. Groups were matched for chronological and gestational age and body mass index\r\n(BMI) accordingly. Total serum leptin and serum IL-6 were determined using ELISA, after\r\nan overnight fasting period of at least 12 hours.\r\nResults. Both leptin and IL-6 concentrations were significantly higher in women in the\r\nthird trimester of pregnancy developing pre-eclampsia compared to normotensive pregnant\r\nwomen (p=0.001). Normal pregnancy was characterized by increased serum leptin levels\r\n(p=0.001) as well as increased IL-6 levels (p=0.001) in comparison to non-pregnant status.\r\nIn women with pre-eclampsia, leptin was positively and significantly correlated with\r\ndiastolic blood pressure (r=0.45, p=0.02), proteinuria (r=0.48, p=0.01) and uric acid values\r\n(r=0.39, p=0.04) and inversely related to HDL cholesterol levels (r=-0.64, p=0.0001).\r\nLikewise, IL-6 was positively related to systolic and diastolic blood pressure (r=0.41,\r\np=0.008 and r=0.60, p=0.00003, respectively), proteinuria (r=0.38, p=0.01) and uric acid\r\nvalues (r=0.43, p=0.004). However, leptin had no correlation with pregnancy outcome in\r\nwomen with or without pre-eclampsia. In contrast, IL-6 was negatively correlated with both\r\nfetal birth at weight (r=-0.35, p=0.02) and Apgar score (r=-0.38, p=0.01).\r\nConclusions. In conclusion pre-eclampsia associates significantly increased serum\r\nleptin concentrations and IL-6 production compared to normal pregnancy. In contrast to\r\nleptin, IL-6 may predict pregnancy outcome (fetal birth weight and Apgar score) in women\r\nwith pre-eclampsia.
  • Clinical review/Extensive clinical experience

    Georgescu CE

    Polycystic Ovary Syndrome Endocrine and Cardio-Metabolic Abnormalities: how to Manage?

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2015 11(1): 77-84 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2015.77

    Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), the main cause of androgen excess in women of reproductive age, is a multifaceted, dynamic and clinically heterogenic disorder. Rotterdam 2003 ESHRE/ASRM definition criteria were recently reinforced at the NIH Consensus Meeting 2012. Concomitant identification of the clinical phenotypes of the syndrome is mandatory in medical care and clinical studies, as these are strongly related to reproductive, cardiovascular and metabolic outcomes. Documentation of polycystic ovarian morphology (PCOM) is challenging, with the AE/PCOS Task Force 2014 suggesting a threshold of ≥25 follicles/ovary in 18- 35 years old women when using high-frequency transducers. Elevated levels of total testosterone and/or free testosterone and/or low sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) stand for androgen excess in women, as stated by the ESE Position Statement 2014. Despite evidence of increased metabolic and cardiovascular risk, increased prevalence of cardiovascular events linked to PCOS status per se is still insufficient documented, mainly because of the clinical heterogeneity of studies populations and lack of prospective data. First-line therapy in the medical management of PCOS is metformin, at least 1.5 g/d, in all patients with documented insulin resistance and hyperinsulinemia. According to Endocrine Society Guidelines 2013, other insulin-sensitizers (e.g. thiazolidinediones) raise safety concerns on the long-term, whereas statins need further evaluation to demonstrate their benefits in the treatment of PCOS, however, are indicated in dyslipidemic patients. Anti-androgens and combined oral contraceptives (COC) are targeting androgen excess, particularly in non-insulin resistant patients, with an overall benefit to risk ratio in PCOS favoring benefits.
  • Notes & Comments

    Malutan A, Costin N., Duncea I., Georgescu Pepene C.E., Mihu D., Rada MP

    Interleukin-8 and vasomotor symptoms in natural and surgically induced menopause

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2013 9(1): 133-144 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2013.133

    Objectives. The aim of this study was to evaluate serum levels of interleukin (IL)-8 in pre- and postmenopausal women and in patients with surgically-induced menopause, and the relationship between IL-8 and vasomotor symptoms. Material and Method. 175 women were enrolled and were divided into 5 groups (I – Fertile women; II – Pre- and perimenopausal women; III – Postmenopausal women; IV – Surgically-induced menopause; V – Chronic inflammation). Multiplex cytokine kits were used to evaluate serum levels of interleukin-8. We determined the serum levels of the follicle stimulating hormone, of the luteinizing hormone, 17β-estradiol, progesterone, dehydroepiandrosterone and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate using sandwich ELISA. The severity of the vasomotor symptoms was evaluated according to FDA guidelines. Results. Serum concentration of IL-8 in women with natural menopause (233.0±226.5 pg/ml; p<0.001) and in women with surgically-induced menopause (148.0±162.0 pg/ml; p=0.045) is significantly higher than in women of reproductive age (84.88±82.32 pg/ml). Serum levels of IL-8 in premenopausal women, postmenopausal women, and in women with surgically-induced menopause, respectively, with severe and moderate hot flashes, on one hand (174.8±90.94 pg/ml, 369.3±194.2 pg/ml, respectively 274.1±146.3 pg/ml), is significantly higher than in women without vasomotor symptoms or with mild hot flashes, on the other hand (19.97±22.15 pg/ml, 28.66±35.72 pg/ml, respectively 28.94±37.68 pg/ml; p<0.001). Serum levels of IL-8 are significantly higher in women of reproductive age with chronic inflammatory pathology (152.3±121.0 pg/ml) than in women without such pathology (84.88±82.32 pg/ml; p=0.02). Conclusions. IL-8 is significantly higher in postmenopausal women with vasomotor symptoms than in women without vasomotor symptoms. In the postmenopausal group, the serum levels of IL-8 are similar to those in women with chronic inflammatory pathology. IL-8 could be a key factor in occurrence of hot flashes in menopause and could be associated with peripheral vasodilatation in these women.
  • General Endocrinology

    Busuioc C, Raducanu-Lichiardopol C, Bold A, Mogoanta L, Georgescu C

    Immunohistochemical aspects of the human foetal thyroid

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2006 2(2): 139-150 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2006.139

    Objective: Thyroid development was studied mainly on animal models and data in humans are scarce. Knowing that there are interspecies differences and a specific timing of thyroid development we aimed to reveal intimate aspects of the human foetal morphology and function.\r\nMaterial and method: Thyroids from 20 aborted fetuses of different gestational ages (8-16 weeks) were embedded in paraffin, sectioned, coloured and immunohistochemically processed using the Avidin-Biotin Complex&#8211;Peroxidase (ABC) method with a pannel of antibodies aimed to reveal the secretory activity (antithyroglobulin monoclonal and polyclonal and anti TITF1 antibodies), the differentiation of intermediate filaments (anti AE1/AE3, anti CK7 and antivimentin monoclonal antibodies), of C cells (anti CEA monoclonal antibodies) and of the thyroid vascular net (anti CD34 monoclonal antibodies).\r\nResults: Thyroglobulin expression was present in thyrocytes cytoplasm even before follicles are formed (8-10 weeks); after 12 weeks appeared also within the colloid and expression increased after 14 weeks showing a luminal pattern of distribution similar to the mature thyroid. TITF1 was present in the thyrocytes nuclei of all groups, weak till 14 weeks and intense thereafter and in the C cells nuclei. C cells appeared after 10 weeks and expressed CEA, vimentin and CK7. Immunostaining for keratins (AE1/AE3, CK7) was rarely positive in cordonal thyrocytes, but was present in follicular thyrocytes and increased with gestational age. Some thyrocytes of all groups were vimentin positive and showed coexpression with cytokeratins. CD 34 expression indicated an early vascular differentiation being present in isolated endothelial cells before 10 weeks and structured capillaries after 10 weeks of gestational age.\r\nConclusions: Immunohistochemistry proved to be a useful tool in our attempt to shed light on human thyroid development which would permit a better pathogenic understanding of thyroid dysgenesias and thyroid neoplasms.
  • Case Report

    Man SC, Chiriac M, Militaru MS, Trifa AP, Goia-Socol M, Georgescu CE

    Association of COL1A1 SP1 and FOK-I VDR Genetic Polymorphisms in Young Male Idiopathic Osteoporosis

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2017 13(2): 224-227 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2017.224

    Introduction. Primary osteoporosis during childhood and adolescence represents an uncommon condition, and secondary forms are more likely to manifest at this age due to chronic disease and adverse effects of medical treatment. Case report. The authors report the case of a young male patient with a history of multiple idiopathic nonvertebral fragility fractures in addition to a family history of maternal osteoporosis and fracture, in whom osteoporosis was confirmed according to 2013 International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD) criteria. Bone markers indicated low bone formation marker osteocalcin. Genetic testing revealed homozygosity for Sp1 COL1A1 gene polymorphism in combination to Fok-I vitamin D receptor (VDR) heterozygous polymorphism, to contribute to low bone mass and increased fracture risk. Severe premenopausal osteoporosis was present in the patient’s mother, who was also tested positive for both gene polymorphisms. Conclusion. This case report highlights the association between COL1A1 and VDR candidate gene polymorphisms and fragility fractures in a family. Individual genetic testing might be of clinical value in idiopathic osteoporosis in young patients, identifying subjects at increased fracture risk.