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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1990 Apr;70(4):1075-81.

Bimodal correlation between the circulating insulin level and the production rate of dehydroepiandrosterone: positive correlation in controls and negative correlation in the polycystic ovary syndrome with acanthosis nigricans.

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Department of Medicine, University of Tennessee, Memphis 38163.


The objective of this study was to define the relationship among the circulating insulin level (IRI), the MCR of dehydroepiandrosterone (MCR-D), and the production rate of DHEA (PR-D) in 10 women with the polycystic ovary syndrome and acanthosis nigricans (PCOS-AN). Seven normal weight and 10 obese women served as controls. Measurement of the MCR-D and PR-D was accomplished by iv saline infusion (0.9% NaCl solution) on day 1 as a control and a 4-h iv dehydroepiandrosterone (unlabeled) infusion (1 mg/h) was performed on day 2. Mean MCR-D was more than 2-fold higher in the obese controls compared to the normal weight controls. However, the plasma concentration of DHEA(PC-D) was not significantly different in the normal and obese control women, since the PR-D was increased proportionately to the MCR-D. The MCR-D and the PR-D were coupled through insulin in the control women, and their correlation coefficients with IRI were positive and identical (0.77 and 0.73, respectively). In contrast, IRI was negatively correlated with PR-D in the PCOS-AN women. Also, unlike the control women, there was minimal or no change in the MCR-D across a broad range of IRI in the PCOS-AN women. Thus, the MCR-D and PR-D were not coupled in these women.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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