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Interrelationships Between Pituitary Hormones as Assessed From 24-hour Serum Concentrations in Healthy Older Subjects

, Ferdinand Roelfsema, Abimbola A Akintola, Steffy W Jansen, P Eline Slagboom, Rudi G J Westendorp, Gerard J Blauw, , Diana Van Heemst
The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism , Volume 105; doi:10.1210/clinem/dgz253

Abstract: Context Hormones of the hypothalamic-pituitary-target gland axes are mostly investigated separately, whereas the interplay between hormones might be as important as each separate hormonal axis. Objective Our aim is to determine the interrelationships between GH, TSH, ACTH, and cortisol in healthy older individuals. Design We made use of 24-hour hormone serum concentrations assessed with intervals of 10 minutes from 38 healthy older individuals with a mean age (SD) of 65.1 (5.1) years from the Leiden Longevity Study. Cross-correlation analyses were performed to assess the relative strength between 2 24-hour hormone serum concentration series for all possible time shifts. Cross-approximate entropy was used to assess pattern synchronicity between 2 24-hour hormone serum concentration series. Results Within an interlinked hormonal axis, ACTH and cortisol were positively correlated with a mean (95% confidence interval) correlation coefficient of 0.78 (0.74–0.81) with cortisol following ACTH concentrations with a delay of 10 minutes. Between different hormonal axes, we observed a negative correlation coefficient between cortisol and TSH of -0.30 (-0.36 to -0.25) with TSH following cortisol concentrations with a delay of 170 minutes. Furthermore, a positive mean (95% confidence interval) correlation coefficient of 0.29 (0.22–0.37) was found between TSH and GH concentrations without any delay. Moreover, cross-approximate entropy analyses showed that GH and cortisol exhibit synchronous serum concentration patterns. Conclusions This study demonstrates that interrelations between hormones from interlinked as well as different hypothalamic-pituitary-target gland axes are observed in healthy older individuals. More research is needed to determine the biological meaning and clinical consequences of these observations.
Keywords: Delay / coefficient / Serum Concentration / hormonal / pituitary target gland / hypothalamic pituitary target

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