Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Gen Comp Endocrinol. 2013 Jul 1;188:282-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ygcen.2013.04.024. Epub 2013 May 4.

Monitoring for potential residual disease activity by serum insulin-like growth factor 1 and soluble Klotho in patients with acromegaly after pituitary surgery: is there an impact of the genomic deletion of exon 3 in the growth hormone receptor (d3-GHR) gene on "safe" GH cut-off values?

Author information

Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Diabetes, University Hospital Zurich, Rämistrasse 100, CH-8091 Zurich, Switzerland.



Acromegaly is an illness usually defined by excessively high growth hormone (GH) and insulin like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) levels, the latter mainly reflecting GH action on the liver. IGF-1, also known as somatomedin C, mediates several actions of GH. The diagnosis and management of acromegaly is relatively straight forward, but long-term follow-up of patients can be difficult, as elevated IGF-1 levels can occur in the presence of apparently normalised GH levels and late recurrence of acromegaly may arise despite previous suppression on oral glucose tolerance testing. Data suggest this applies especially to patients in whom the GH receptor lacks exon 3. In such patients, GH may not always be a useful marker of disease, and traditional GH cut-offs may be misleading. Recent data suggest that soluble Klotho (sKlotho), besides and in addition to IGF-1, may help monitor the activity of GH-producing adenomas (presumably reflecting GH action on the kidneys) and may be a useful supplementary tool.


GHR genotyping was performed in 112 patients with acromegaly. IGF-1 and sKlotho levels were measured in the sera of patients before and after transsphenoidal surgery, with emphasis on patients judged inconclusively cured by surgery or with small residual tumour masses shortly after surgery. Patients were assessed for recurrence of acromegaly with GH levels (random or nadir during an oGTT).


Of the 48 patients who underwent surgery between 2000 and 2009 and who had well-documented longer term follow-up at our institution, 29 had no biochemical evidence of residual disease activity after transsphenoidal surgery (marked reduction in IGF-1 and sKlotho levels, GH suppressible to <1 ng/ml) and were classified as in remission. 2 of these patients developed recurrent symptoms of acromegaly during follow-up with increasing levels of IGF-1 and sKlotho, and both patients were carriers of the d3-GHR genotype.


Acromegalic patients with the d3-GHR polymorphism might be - for a given low postsurgical GH level - at higher risk for recurrence and may require a lower GH nadir during oGTT to be classified as in remission. Soluble Klotho could be useful in the follow-up of acromegalic patients. The question arises whether sKlotho not only reflects the activity of GH-secreting pituitary adenomas but whether Klotho (ectodomain clipping?) could also mediate selected actions of GH.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center