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

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  • General Endocrinology

    Kobylinska L, Panaitescu AM, Gabreanu G, Anghel CG, Mihailescu I, Rad F, Nedelcu C, Mocanu I, Constantin C, Badescu SV, Dobrescu I, Neagu M, Geic OI, Zagrean L, Zagrean AM

    Plasmatic Levels of Neuropeptides, Including Oxytocin, in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Correlate with the Disorder Severity

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2019 15(1): 16-24 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2019.16

    Context. Oxytocin has been investigated as a potential medication for psychiatric disorders. Objective and design. This study prospectively investigates correlations between oxytocin and other neuropeptides plasma levels in patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) according to severity and treatment, as compared to controls. Subjects and methods. Thirty-one children (6 neurotypical as control) participated in this study. The patients were classified into mildly and severely-affected, according to Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS) scores. Oxytocin, orexin A and B, α-MSH, β-endorphins, neurotensin and substance P were investigated using a quantitative multiplex assay or a competitive-ELISA method. Results. Plasma oxytocin levels differed between the groups (F (2, 24) =6.48, p=0.006, η2=0.35, observed power=86%): patients with the mild ASD had higher values of plasma oxytocin than those with the severe form (average difference=74.56±20.74pg/mL, p=0.004). Conclusions. These results show a negative correlation between plasma levels of oxytocin and the severity of ASD and support the involvement of oxytocinergic mechanisms in ASD.
  • Editorial

    Panaitescu AM, Nicolaides K

    Fetal Goitre in Maternal Graves’ Disease

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2018 14(1): 85-89 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2018.85

    Fetal goitre is found in about 1 in 5,000 births, usually in association with maternal Graves’ disease, due to transplacental passage of high levels of thyroid stimulating antibodies or of anti-thyroid drugs. A goitre can cause complications attributable to its size and to the associated thyroid dysfunction. Fetal ultrasound examination allows easy recognition of the goitre but is not reliable in distinguishing between fetal hypo- and hyperthyroidism. Assessment of the maternal condition and, in some cases, cordocentesis provide adequate diagnosis of the fetal thyroid function. First-line treatment consists of adjusting the dose of maternal anti-thyroid drugs. Delivery is aimed at term. In cases with large goitres, caesarean-section is indicated.
  • Images in Endocrinology

    Panaitescu AM, Vayna AM

    A Case of Uncontrolled Maternal Diabetes Mellitus Associated with Fetal Sacral Agenesis

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2018 14(1): 132-132 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2018.132

  • Letter to the Editor

    Panaitescu AM

    Resuming Adequate Screening for Gestational Diabetes Mellitus During the Ongoing Covid-19 Pandemic

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2021 17(2): 278-279 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2021.278

    The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had a profound impact on antenatal care, forcing authorities to consider some medical services unessential in the pursuit of avoiding the valid risk of patient contamination. The oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) has been in some cases overlooked for screening in pregnancy, with potential detrimental consequences in terms of not diagnosing and treating gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM). The number of tests has dropped by 35% in 2020 in our hospital. We make a plea for resuming OGTT at 24-28 weeks gestation at least for women considered at high risk.
  • General Endocrinology

    Panaitescu AM, Isac S, Pavel B, Ilie AS, Creanga M, Totan A, Zagrean L, Peltecu G, Zagrean AM

    Oxytocin Reduces Seizure Burden and Hippocampal Injury in a Rat Model of Perinatal Asphyxia

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2018 14(3): 315-319 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2018.315

    Context. Foetal asphyxia, a frequent birth complication, detrimentally impacts the immature brain, resulting in neuronal damage, uncontrolled seizure activity and long-term neurological deficits. Oxytocin, a neurohormone mediating important materno-foetal interactions and parturition, has been previously suggested to modulate the immature brain’s excitability, playing a neuroprotective role. Our aim was to investigate the effects of exogenous oxytocin administration on seizure burden and acute brain injury in a perinatal model of asphyxia in rats. Animals and methods. Asphyxia was modelled by exposing immature rats to a 90-minute episode of low oxygen (9% O2) and high CO2 (20% CO2). Control rats were kept in ambient room-air for the same time interval. In a third group of experiments, oxytocin (0.02 UI/g body weight) was nasally administered 30 minutes before the asphyxia episode. Seizure burden was assessed by the cumulative number of loss of righting reflex (LRR) over a two-hour postexposure period. Acute brain injury was assessed through hippocampal S-100 beta, a biomarker of cellular injury, 24-hours after exposure. Results. Asphyxia increased both LRR and hippocampal S-100 beta protein compared to controls, and these effects were significantly reduced by oxytocin administration. Conclusion. Oxytocin treatment decreased both seizure burden and hippocampal injury, supporting a potential neuroprotective role for oxytocin in perinatal asphyxia.
  • General Endocrinology

    Panaitescu AM, Rotaru D, Ban I, Peltecu G, Zagrean AM

    The Prevalence of Underweight, Overweight and Obesity in a Romanian Population in the First Trimester of Pregnancy – Clinical Implications

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2019 15(3): 323-332 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2019.323

    Context. Underweight, overweight and obesity are important global public health issues and risk factors for adverse perinatal outcomes. Objective. To assess the distribution of the body mass index (BMI) in the Romanian obstetric population in the first trimester of pregnancy and its correlation with pregnancy outcomes. We also report the distribution of blood pressure (BP) parameters and their correlation with BMI. Design. This retrospective study includes 9,064 women attending routine first trimester visit and ultrasound scan at 12.8(±0.6) gestational weeks. Characteristics, parity, method of conception, blood pressure (from 3,650 women), maternal weight and height, BMI and foetal ultrasound were recorded. Pregnancy outcomes were available for 1,607 deliveries. The Pearson correlation coefficient was assessed for each BMI group vs. blood pressure parameters, gestational age and birth weight. ANOVA analysis and post hoc tests were used to determine group differences. Linear regression was applied to estimate the contribution of BMI and gestational age to birth weight variance. Results. In our population, 66.37% pregnant women had a normal BMI, 19.29% were overweight, and 7.56% were obese. There was a weak-to-medium positive correlation between BMI and blood pressure parameters, for all weight categories. The correlation between maternal BMI and birth weight was positive for normal and overweight. Conclusions. Our findings highlight the need for more effective health strategies targeting reduction of weight-related problems in women of childbearing age.
  • Clinical review/Extensive clinical experience

    Panaitescu AM, Peltecu G

    Gestational Diabetes. Obstetrical Perspective

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2016 12(3): 331-334 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2016.331

    This review discusses current international recommendations for GDM diagnosis and management and argues whether it would be worth considering first, universal screening for GDM in our country, second, updating of management guidelines and third, organized follow-up of women diagnosed with GDM and adoption of lifestyle interventions after delivery that could reduce the onset and prevalence of type 2 DM.
  • Case Report

    Scutelnicu A, Panaitescu AM, Ciobanu AM, Gica N, Botezatu R, Peltecu G, Gheorghiu ML

    Iatrogenic Cushing’S Syndrome as a Consequence of Nasal Use of Betamethasone Spray During Pregnancy

    Acta Endo (Buc) 2020 16(4): 511-517 doi: 10.4183/aeb.2020.511

    Introduction. Glucocorticoids (GC) are largely used for their anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressive effects. Until recently “local” administration (inhalation, topical, intra-articular, ocular and nasal) was considered devoid of important systemic side effects, but there is no administration form, dosing or treatment duration for which the risk of iatrogenic Cushing’s syndrome (CS) and consequent adrenal insufficiency (AI) can be excluded with certainty. Patients and methods. We present the case of a pregnant woman who developed overt CS with secondary AI in the second trimester of pregnancy. She had low morning plasma cortisol 6.95 nmol/L (normal non-pregnant range 166 – 507) and low ACTH level 1.54 pg/mL (normal range 7.2 – 63.3), suggestive for iatrogenic CS. A thorough anamnesis revealed chronic sinusitis long-term treated with high doses of intranasal betamethasone spray (6 - 10 applications/day, approximately 10 mg betamethasone/week, for 5 months). After decreasing the dose and switching to an alpha-1 adrenergic agonist spray, the adrenal function recovered in a few weeks without manifestations of AI. The patient underwent an uneventful delivery of a normal baby. A review of the literature showed that only a few cases with exogenous CS and consequent AI caused by intranasal GC administration were described, mostly in children, but none during pregnancy. Conclusion. Long-term high doses of intranasal GC may induce iatrogenic CS and should be avoided. Low levels of ACTH and cortisol should prompt a detailed anamnesis looking for various types of glucocorticoid administration.