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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Dec;99(12):E2549-56. doi: 10.1210/jc.2014-2275.

Endothelial progenitor cells are reduced in acromegalic patients and can be restored by treatment with somatostatin analogs.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine (G.P.F., V.d.K., A.A.), Division of Metabolic Diseases, Laboratory of Experimental Diabetology (G.P.F., M.A., A.A.), Venetian Institute of Molecular Medicine, Department of Medicine (F.D., I.A., C.M., R.V., P.M.), Internal Medicine 3, Center for the Study and Integrated Therapy of Obesity, Endocrine-Metabolic Laboratory, and Department of Medicine, Immunology, and Hematology (E.B., C.A.), University of Padova, 35100 Padova, Italy.

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Acromegaly increases cardiovascular risk, possibly due to the high prevalence of classical risk factors. However, in vitro studies show a protective role of GH/IGF-1 on the endothelium.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of the study was to investigate circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs), a marker of vascular regeneration, in acromegalic patients and how they are affected by acromegaly treatment.

DESIGN:

This was a cross-sectional case-control and observational study.

SETTING:

The study was conducted at a tertiary ambulatory referral endocrinology center.

PATIENTS:

Forty-three acromegalic patients (26 active; 17 inactive) and 43 control subjects matched by age, gender, and degree of glucose tolerance participated in the study.

INTERVENTION:

Circulating EPCs were quantified by flow cytometry based on the expression of CD34, CD133, and kinase insert domain-containing receptor (KDR). Nine patients with active acromegaly were reevaluated after 24 weeks of treatment with somatostatin analogs (SSAs).

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE:

Differences in EPC levels between patients and controls were measured.

RESULTS:

Acromegalic patients showed a significant reduction of the total CD34(+)KDR(+) EPC population compared with controls, which was more evident in patients without diabetes or hypertension. More definite CD34(+)CD133(+)KDR(+) EPCs were reduced in patients with active compared with those with inactive acromegaly and compared with controls. The number of CD34(+)CD133(+)KDR(+) EPCs correlated with IGF-1 levels (r = -0.45; P < .001), fasting plasma glucose (r = -0.40; P = .004), and the homeostasis model assessment index of insulin resistance (r = -0.32; P = .026). CD34(+)CD133(+)KDR(+) EPCs increased 2-fold after SSA treatment.

CONCLUSIONS:

Acromegalic patients have a reduced endothelial regenerative capacity, possibly due to activation of the GH/IGF-1, rather than concomitant risk factors. Treatment with SSAs can restore immature EPCs to normal levels.

PMID:
25144634
DOI:
10.1210/jc.2014-2275
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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