Relationships between environmental organochlorine contaminant residues, plasma corticosterone concentrations, and intermediary metabolic enzyme activities in Great Lakes herring gull embryos.
Experiments were conducted to survey and detect differences in plasma corticosterone concentrations and intermediary metabolic enzyme activities in herring gull (Larus argentatus) embryos environmentally exposed to organochlorine contaminants in ovo. Unincubated fertile herring gull eggs were collected from an Atlantic coast control site and various Great Lakes sites in 1997 and artificially incubated in the laboratory. Liver and/or kidney tissues from approximately half of the late-stage embryos were analyzed for the activities of various intermediary metabolic enzymes known to be regulated, at least in part, by corticosteroids. Basal plasma corticosterone concentrations were determined for the remaining embryos. Yolk sacs were collected from each embryo and a subset was analyzed for organochlorine contaminants. Regression analysis of individual yolk sac organochlorine residue concentrations, or 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin equivalents (TEQs), with individual basal plasma corticosterone concentrations indicated statistically significant inverse relationships for polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins/polychlorinated dibenzofurans (PCDDs/PCDFs), total polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), non-ortho PCBs, and TEQs. Similarly, inverse relationships were observed for the activities of two intermediary metabolic enzymes (phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and malic enzyme) when regressed against PCDDs/PCDFs. Overall, these data suggest that current levels of organochlorine contamination may be affecting the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis and associated intermediary metabolic pathways in environmentally exposed herring gull embryos in the Great Lakes. (+info)
Dual effects of prolonged ACTH stimulation on 4-hydroxyaminoquinoline 1-oxide-induced adrenocortical lesions in rats.
The effects of a long-acting synthetic ACTH on 4-hydroxyaminoquinoline 1-oxide (4HAQO)-induced adrenocortical lesions were investigated in female rats. A total of 140 6-week-old rats were divided into 4 equal groups, given a single s.c. injection of 7 mg/kg 4HAQO or vehicle, followed by repeated sc administration of the synthetic ACTH or no further treatment. Subgroups of 10 rats in each group were sequentially sacrificed at weeks 20, 30, and 40. Adenomas and adenomatous nodules developed in the adrenal cortex of animals receiving 4HAQO and the chronic ACTH stimulation. Both lesions were located in the deeper zones of the adrenal cortex adjacent to the medulla and were composed of large-sized, clear-type cells. From week 20, middle zone, cortical cystic degeneration, which mimics the age-associated degenerative change named adrenal peliosis, was frequently observed in the adrenal glands of animals treated with 4HAQO alone. Its development was inhibited by ACTH. In the control animals, peliotic changes occurred at low incidence and only at the termination of experiment. These results indicate that long-term stimulation of ACTH promotes the development of adrenocortical tumors but suppresses the occurrence of adrenal peliosis in rats treated with 4HAQO. (+info)
Lower baseline plasma cortisol and prolactin together with increased body temperature and higher mCPP-induced cortisol responses in men with pedophilia.
There is some evidence that hormonal and serotonergic alterations may play a role in the pathophysiology of paraphilias. The aims of the present study were to examine: 1) baseline plasma cortisol, plasma prolactin, and body temperature; and 2) cortisol, prolactin, body temperature, as well as behavioral responses to meta-chlorophenylpiperazine (mCPP) and placebo in pedophiles and normal men. Pedophiles showed significantly lower baseline plasma cortisol and prolactin concentrations and a higher body temperature than normal volunteers. The mCPP-induced cortisol responses were significantly greater in pedophiles than in normal volunteers. In normal volunteers, mCPP-induced a hyperthermic response, whereas in pedophiles no such response was observed. mCPP induced different behavioral responses in pedophiles than in normal men. In pedophiles, but not in normal men, mCPP increased the sensations "feeling dizzy, " "restless," and "strange" and decreased the sensation "feeling hungry". The results suggest that there are several serotonergic disturbances in pedophiles. It is hypothesized that the results are compatible with a decreased activity of the serotonergic presynaptic neuron and a 5-HT2 postsynaptic receptor hyperresponsivity. (+info)
Structure-activity relationships for ulcerogenic and adrenocorticolytic effects of alkyl nitriles, amines, and thiols.
In rats, a single administration of acrylonitrile (vinyl cyanide) produces a rapidly occurring bilateral adrenal apoplexy. Structure-activity studies have shown that a close derivative, propionitrile (ethyl cyanide), causes duodenal ulcer without markedly affecting the adrenal glands. Prolonging the two-carbon chain of propionitrile by a methyl group (n-butyronitrile) enhances, replacing the methyl by bromide or nitrile decreases, while substitution by an amino group abolistes the ulcerogenic potency and variably affects the adrenocorticolytic action. On assaying a large number of nonnitrile compounds as well for ulcerogenic effect, such as thiols and amines, this effect was found to be related to a two-carbon structure bearing electronegative radicals on one or both ends of the chain. (+info)
Molecular cloning, chromosomal localization of human peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptor and PKA regulatory subunit type 1A (PRKAR1A)-associated protein PAP7, and studies in PRKAR1A mutant cells and tissues.
A mouse protein that interacts with the peripheral-type benzodiazepine receptor (PBR) and cAMP-dependent protein kinase A (PKA) regulatory subunit RIalpha (PRKAR1A), named PBR and PKA-associated protein 7 (PAP7), was identified and shown to be involved in hormone-induced steroid biosynthesis. We report the identification of the human PAP7 gene, its expression pattern, genomic structure, and chromosomal mapping to 1q32-1q41. Human PAP7 is a 60-kDa protein highly homologous to the rodent protein. PAP7 is widely present in human tissues and highly expressed in seminal vesicles, pituitary, thyroid, pancreas, renal cortex, enteric epithelium, muscles, myocardium and in steroidogenic tissues, including the gonads and adrenal cortex. These tissues are also targets of Carney complex (CNC), a multiple neoplasia syndrome caused by germline inactivating PRKAR1A mutations (PRKAR1A-mut) and associated with primary pigmented nodular adrenocortical disease (PPNAD) and increased steroid synthesis. PAP7 and PRKAR1A expression were studied in PPNAD and in lymphoblasts from patients bearing PRKAR1A-mut. Like PRKAR1A, PAP7 was decreased in CNC lymphocytes and PPNAD nodules, but not in the surrounding cortex. These studies showed that, like in the mouse, human PAP7 is highly expressed in steroidogenic tissues, where it follows the pattern of PRKAR1A expression, suggesting that it participates in PRKAR1A-mediated tumorigenesis and hypercortisolism. (+info)
Allgrove or 4 "A" syndrome: an autosomal recessive syndrome causing multisystem neurological disease.
Allgrove's or "4 A" syndrome is a rare autosomal recessive condition with alacrima, achalasia, autonomic disturbance, and ACTH insensitivity among other features. Recent studies have identified mutations in the AAAS, a candidate gene on chromosome 12q13 in such patients. Manifestations in adult patients are rarely reported. The syndrome usually presents during the first decade of life with dysphagia or severe (occasionally fatal) hypoglycaemic or hypotensive attacks, related to adrenocortical insufficiency. Onset of adrenal insufficiency or other features may be delayed to adulthood. In contrast with paediatric patients, adult patients with Allgrove's syndrome may present with multisystem neurological disease; the childhood history of achalasia or alacrima may be overlooked. The authors describe two families with two affected siblings and a further unrelated patient with typical clinical features of Allgrove's syndrome, who exhibit signs of multisystem neurological disease including hyperreflexia, muscle wasting, dysarthria, ataxia, optic atrophy, and intellectual impairment. None of the cases have developed adrenal insufficiency but all have progressive neurological disability. Autonomic dysfunction was a significant cause of morbidity in two cases. The three index cases represent the longest described follow up of Allgrove's syndrome into adulthood. It is speculated that they represent a subgroup of patients who follow an often undiagnosed chronic neurological course. Recognition of the syndrome presenting in adult life permits treatment of unrecognised autonomic dysfunction, adrenal insufficiency and dysphagia, and appropriate genetic advice. (+info)
Cushing's syndrome due to bilateral adrenocortical adenomas with unique histological features.
Cushing's syndrome due to bilateral cortisol-secreting adenomas rarely occurs. We present a case of Cushing's syndrome due to bilateral adenomas. Both adenomas had distinct cell compositions, and were compared with emphasis on immunohistochemical and enzyme histochemical analysis for cytochrome P450(11beta) and 3beta-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase (3betaHSD). A 37 year-old female was diagnosed with ACTH-independent Cushing's syndrome based on physical findings and hormonal evaluation. High-resolution CT scan showed bilateral adrenocortical adenomas and atrophied glands. 131I-methylnorcholesterol incorporation into both glands suggested both adenomas were functional. Clinical diagnosis prior to surgery was ACTH-independent Cushing's syndrome due to functioning bilateral adenomas. The left adrenal gland was totally resected, while the right one was partially resected by laparoscopic approach. Both adenomas were black on cut sections, and were comparatively evaluated by immunohistochemical and enzyme histochemical analysis for P450(11beta) and 3betaSD. The left adenoma was 1.6 cm in diameter and had a complex cellular composition and enzyme expression similar to that of primary pigmented nodular adrenocortical disease (PPNAD), while the right adenoma was 1.8 cm in diameter with compact cells typical of a solitary cortisol-producing adenoma. Adjacent bilateral adrenal cortex showed marked atrophy, but contained several micronodules. Serum cortisol levels, both at basal and after a low dodexamethasone, normalized thirteen months after surgery. In conclusion, the present case of Cushing's syndrome with bilateral adrenal adenomas demonstrated for the first time the simultaneous occurrence of two distinct adenomas, an ordinary cortisol-producing adenoma and a PPNAD-like adenoma. Further case reports of multiple adrenal adenomas should be well-analyzed to clarify whether the results from this case represent a new subgroup of ACTH-independent Cushing's syndrome. (+info)
Aldosteronism associated with adrenal cortical adenoma.
An electrolyte-regulating corticoid has been identified and given the name aldosterone. This hormone may be produced in amounts above normal in adrenal cortical tumors in hyperplastic adrenal glands and in normal appearing adrenal glands. Overproduction of aldosterone is accompanied by certain characteristic clinical manifestations which should suggest the diagnosis. The diagnosis may be supported by examinations available in most well equipped clinical laboratories. Bioassay of aldosterone in the urine and estimation of exchangeable body sodium and potassium, using radioactive salts, are necessary for confirmation of the diagnosis.Since the description of this salt-retaining hormone by Simpson and Tait and the discovery of its chemical structure by Reichstein in 1954, reports of 14 cases have been published. Surgical removal of the offending tissue gives spectacular relief from the very distressing symptoms. (+info)